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NK leader-rocket drill

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

SEOUL, March 20 (Yonhap) -- As North Korea moves to ratchet up tensions on the Korean Peninsula, its leader Kim Jong-un has ordered his military to conduct mobile anti-aircraft rocket and unmanned combat air vehicle exercises, a state media outlet reported Wednesday.

The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said in a report, monitored in Seoul, that Kim issued the order to conduct the drills during an inspection trip to an unspecified military unit.

The report said Kim oversaw part of the exercises that aimed to destroy low-flying cruise missile as well as lauded the accuracy of unmanned attack drones and expressed satisfaction with his military's ability to counter U.S. Tomahawk cruise missiles with surface-to-air rockets.

Kim also checked the capability of the North's attack drones to hit any target in South Korea, it said, adding that the leader made clear he will issue orders to destroy military and government targets in South Korea if provoked, and warned the country could raze U.S. bases all across the Pacific to the ground.

"The planes were assigned the flight route and time with the targets in south Korea in mind, Kim Jong Un said, adding with great satisfaction that they were was proved to be able to mount super precision attack on any enemy targets," the KCNA said in an English dispatch.

"He stressed the need to have at command the coordinates of every enemy target in the operational theater of south Korea and input them in precision drone attack means of the Korean style so that they should make point attack on any target any moment," the report added.

The report comes after the North warned earlier in the day that it will take military action against future deployment of U.S. strategic B-52 bombers over South Korea. The warning came in response to a U.S. announcement a day earlier that a B-52 bomber took part in ongoing joint South Korea-U.S. military exercises.

Analysts in Seoul said the KCNA report may have been aimed to show Pyongyang's ability to counter the B-52 threat. The long-range strategic bombers can carry cruise missiles as well as conventional high explosive bombs.

In the past few weeks, the North's communist regime has unilaterally scrapped the Korean War armistice and said it will no longer respect non-aggression pacts reached with Seoul in the past.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/yonhap-news-agency/130320/nk-leader-rocket-drill-1