Kim Yo Jong, the authoritative sister of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, pushed back on South Korea’s defense minister, who said his country may launch a preemptive strike on their northern neighbors, calling him a «scum-like guy.»
«The senseless and scum-like guy dare mention a ‘preemptive strike’ at a nuclear weapons state,» Kim said told state media.
She also warned South Korea could be subject to retaliation as South Korean Defense Minister Suh Wook boasted Friday that his country could launch precision strikes on North Korea if his country believes there to be an impending missile strike.
«South Korea may face a serious threat owing to the reckless remarks made by its defense minister,» she added. «South Korea should discipline itself if it wants to stave off disaster.»
The comment in question from Wook came amid missile test launches from North Korea and is particularly unusual as South Korean President Moon Jae-in pushes for reconciliation across the Korean Peninsula.
Pak Jong Chon, an official within the North Korean government, also warned that «any slight misjudgment and ill statement rattling the other party under the present situation» could result in «a dangerous conflict and a full-blown war.»
North Korea will «mercilessly direct military force into destroying major targets in Seoul and the South Korean army» if a preemptive attack occurs, Pak said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.