South Korea military says ready to strike back if North attacks

SEOUL Wed Mar 6, 2013 12:25am EST

A North Korean flag on a tower flutters in the wind at a North Korean village near the truce village of Panmunjom in the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas in this picture taken just south of the border, in Paju, north of Seoul, February 15, 2013. REUTERS/Lee Jae-Won

A North Korean flag on a tower flutters in the wind at a North Korean village near the truce village of Panmunjom in the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas in this picture taken just south of the border, in Paju, north of Seoul, February 15, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Lee Jae-Won

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SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's military said on Wednesday it was fully prepared to strike back at the North if its neighbor uses military force, a day after Pyongyang threatened to scrap the armistice agreement ending the 1950-53 Korean War.

"If North Korea undertakes provocation and threatens the lives and safety of our people, we make it clear that we have all preparations in place for a strong and decisive punishment not only against the source of the aggression and its support forces but also the commanding element," a major general of the South Korean military told a press conference.

(Reporting by Jack Kim; Editing by David Chance)

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