Seoul: North Korea on Tuesday condemned air
strikes by the US-led coalition on Libya, calling its own
self-defence policy a "valuable deterrent" against potential
The North's foreign ministry spokesman called the air
assault "a hideous crime against humanity" and a "gross breach
of the dignity" of Libyans, in an interview with the state-run
Korean Central News Agency.
"Such war action can never be justified and should be
halted at once," the spokesman said.
Operation Odyssey Dawn led by US, French and British
troops, aims to stop Moamer Kadhafi's forces harming civilians
involved in a month-long uprising.
But the assault on Libya teaches "a serious lesson"
that the communist North needs "strong self-defence" to guard
against potential attacks, the spokesman said.
Pyongyang's "path of Songgun (military-first)" was a
"very valuable deterrent for averting a war," he added.
Experts say the isolated nation has stepped up its
campaign to block information on pro-democracy protests in the
Arab World, fearing they could spark similar disturbances
among its own people.
The North tightly controls access to the Internet and
attempts to block other sources of information about the
outside world, though DVDs and mobile phones smuggled from
China have been eroding barriers.
Pyongyang and Tripoli have maintained close diplomatic
ties, with Kadhafi described in the North as a "revolutionary
comrade" of leader Kim Jong-Il, according to defectors from
The North has developed nuclear weapons and launched
ballistic missiles that could potentially reach Alaska in what
it called an effort to defend itself from enemies.
Pyongyang heightened regional security fears in
November by disclosing an apparently operational uranium
enrichment plant, which experts said can be reconfigured to
produce atomic weapons.
The North in the same month shelled a South Korean
island near the tense sea border.
First Published: Wednesday, March 23, 2011, 00:20