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APAC

U.S. urges North Korea to refrain from provocations

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un guides Korean People's Army (KPA) military drills, in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on February 21, 2016. REUTERS/KCNA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Defense Department on Thursday responded to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s order for his country to be ready to use nuclear weapons “at any time” by saying that Pyongyang should “refrain from provocative actions that aggravate tensions.”

“We are aware of the reports, and are closely monitoring the situation on the Korean Peninsula in coordination with our regional allies,” said Commander Bill Urban, a Pentagon spokesman.

“We urge North Korea to refrain from provocative actions that aggravate tensions and instead focus on fulfilling its international obligations and commitments.”

Reporting by David Brunnstrom; Editing by Mohammad Zargham

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