South Korea’s military plans to revive the reference to North Korean ballistic missile tests as “provocations”, informed sources said on Thursday in an apparent reflection of South Korean President, Yoon Suk-yeol administration’s hardline stance on the recalcitrant regime’s military threats.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff have decided to use the expression in its public announcements of future North Korean missile launches in line with new Defence Minister Lee Jong-sup’s directive, according to the sources.
The preceding Moon Jae-in administration had refrained from describing North Korean missile launches as provocations, as it pushed for inter-Korean rapprochement, with Pyongyang having balked at the expression, Yonhap news agency reported.
The South Korean military also plans to stop using the expression, “unidentified projectiles,” in its initial reference to North Korean missile launches. Instead, it will use the expression “unidentified ballistic missiles.”
In recent years, the North Korea has accused South Korea and the United States of using “double-dealing” standards — a reference to the allies having cast its missile activities as “provocations” while justifying their own as “deterrence”.