Monday, February 10

North Korean Tensions on the Rise as Joint US - South Korea Military Drills in Near Future Once Again

The US State Department said it was "deeply disappointed" by the North Korea's decision to rescind its invitation to Robert King, the US special envoy for North Korean human rights issues. King's visit was to center around  discussions of a long-detained American’s possible release, the State Department said Monday.

The rescinding of the US Envoys invitation comes ahead of the annual Combined Forces Command US - South Korea military drills. Pyongyang has urged Seoul to cancel the drills once again.

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The allies' Combined Forces Command (CFC) said on Monday that the "Key Resolve" and "Foal Eagle" exercises would run from February 24 to April 18 2014.

A combined total of 12,700 US troops will participate in the two drills, the CFC said, adding that North Korea has been informed of the dates and the "non-provocative" nature of the maneuvers.

North Korea views the annual drills as rehearsals for invasion. North Korea has warned the South of an "unimaginable holocaust" if they go ahead with the planned military drills.

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