PYONGYANG, April 17. /TASS/. North Korea dismisses the United States plans to deploy the THAAD missile defense system in South Korea as a dangerous military provocation, a spokesman for Pyongyang’s National Peace Committee said on Friday.
In case of the deployment of THAAD, which is a key element of the US anti-ballistic missile defense, "South Korea will turn into an American nuclear arsenal aimed at carrying out a preventive strike at any time on the territory of North Korea and a number of other countries of the Northeast Asia," according to the organization.
This step "should be considered as a dangerous military provocation that can cause a nuclear catastrophe," the statement stresses.
In these conditions, "Pyongyang is not planning to monitor the US and South Korean military preparations passively," the spokesman warned. In response to the THAAD deployment, North Korea "will strengthen its nuclear deterrence forces," the statement reads.
The THAAD system is meant to protect the forces of the United States and its allies, and also cities and key facilities from all types of ballistic missiles. It intercepts the warhead in final phase of its path during the last minute of approach to target.
Reports of plans for deploying the THAAD system in South Korea have drawn angry protests from the neighboring countries, including Russia and China. The Russian Foreign Ministry has warned that this measure might trigger an arms race in the region.