Seoul: South Korea is seeing the warning by North Korea to foreigners in Seoul to consider evacuation as psychological warfare, the presidential office said on Tuesday.
“(The warning) is seen as psychological warfare against foreigners in South Korea," presidential spokeswoman Kim Haing said at a press briefing. "We believe that foreigners in South Korea as well as our nationals will be unfazed as they have great confidence and trust in our military and the Republic of Korea."
Her comments came after the DPRK`s Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee called on all foreign organizations, companies and tourists in South Korea to prepare measures for evacuation in case of war.
The committee said the DPRK "does not want to see foreigners in South Korea fall victim to the war," warning that the situation on the Korean Peninsula "is inching close to a thermonuclear war." Pyongyang has told foreign embassies to mull possible evacuation if tensions flare up.
Regarding the widely expected missile launch by the DPRK, Kim said that "the time will come when North Korea (DPRK) should make a choice between becoming weaker on economic, political sanctions from the international community after launching missiles and becoming a healthy member of the international society after stopping provocations."
The spokeswoman urged the DPRK to make the right choice about its future, stressing that the time hereafter would be important given the trend so far.
Tensions have been running high on the Korean Peninsula after the DPRK conducted its third nuclear test on Feb. 12 in protest against the joint military drills between Seoul and Washington.
The DPRK said it will restart operations at its Yongbyon nuclear complex, including a uranium enrichment plant and a five- megawatt graphite moderated reactor that had been "mothballed and disabled" since October 2007 under an agreement reached at the six- party talks.
South Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin told lawmakers last week that the DPRK moved intermediate-range missiles to its east coast. The missiles were feared to be fired off before April 15 when Pyongyang celebrates the birthday of Kim Il-sung, the founder of the DPRK and the late grandfather of Kim Jung-un.