South Korea's New Military Handbook Designates North as 'Enemy', Reports Say
06:56 GMT 30.05.2022 (Updated: 18:35 GMT 19.10.2022)
© AP Photo / Ahn Young-joonSoldiers of the South Korean army special forces demonstrate their martial art skills during Naktong River Battle re-enactment in Waegwan, South Korea, Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016
© AP Photo / Ahn Young-joon
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Seoul has designated Pyongyang as an "enemy" in the new educational materials distributed among the military, acting on the new South Korean presidential administration's vow to toughen the stance toward the North after its recent missile launches, media reported on Monday.
"North Korea's provocations are security threats facing us, and as long as such security threats continue, the North's military and its regime are our enemy," the South Korean military education materials read, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.
The South Korean military distributed the materials on 9 May, following the country's new defence minister, Lee Jong-sup's, speech at a parliamentary hearing that said the North was an "evident" enemy posing a nuclear threat given its recent missile launches, according to the report.
The former South Korean presidential administration refrained from designating Pyongyang as an enemy to preserve an opportunity of maintaining an inter-Korean dialogue, while the present government has taken a hard-line stance on the nuclear and missile threats coming from the North, the report said.
© Sputnik / Iliya PitalevSoldiers during a military parade marking the 105th birthday of Kim Il-Sung, the founder of North Korea, in Pyongyang
Soldiers during a military parade marking the 105th birthday of Kim Il-Sung, the founder of North Korea, in Pyongyang
© Sputnik / Iliya Pitalev/
In the military education materials dated 2019, Seoul included Pyongyang in the list of "real military threats" and considered important the need to secure "posture and capabilities to respond strongly and sternly should the North carry out provocations or hostile acts," it added.
North Korea has intensified launches of ballistic missiles and other projectiles in 2022. Since the beginning of the year, Pyongyang launched 16 missiles, some of which it said were hypersonic. US intelligence has shown that North Korea may be preparing to carry out a nuclear test.