North Korea Threat: Asia on Edge as War Games Start
The North Korea threat of nuclear force has the Asian region on edge. South Korea said the border with North Korea was quiet following Pyongyang's nuclear saber-rattling over the South's naval exercises with the United States.The war games begin Sunday and will include the U.S. aircraft carrier George Washington and as many as 20 other ships and submarines.A statement issued by North Korea's powerful National Defense Commission on Friday vowed to use nuclear weapons over what it considers a provocation by Washington and Seoul."We are reinforcing surveillance in the Military Demarcation Line and other areas, but there have been no noticeable moves," an official with the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff told South Korea's Yonhap news agency Saturday.The latest threat from the North had its origins in the sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan this spring. South Korea blames North Korea and the North denies any role in the incident.North Korea's statement says it insists on the right to "probe the truth" about the Cheonan, the statement said.This latest crisis has dominated Asian regional diplomacy in recent days. The BBC said Saturday that China, North Korea's friend, has warned the United States not to antagonize the isolated North Korean regime.U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was in Hanoi Friday for the ASEAN Regional Forum. She discussed the situation with China's foreign minister, but did not meet with the North Korean representative, the BBC said.