SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA — North Korea on Friday accused South Korean President Park Geun-Hye of hurting the dignity of its leadership and slammed her as “a confrontation maniac.”
The warning came a day after Park denounced North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un for “playing a gamble to escalate tension” on the Korean peninsula.
The North’s Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea, responsible for inter-Korean ties, said Park had attempted to “bar the situation from leading to detente.”
If Park continues to slander the North’s leadership, she will face “a deadlier retaliation” than what her predecessor did, it said in a statement through state media.
Park said Thursday that North Korea’s new policy of pursuing economic construction and the building of nuclear force together would “never” succeed.
Park “unhesitatingly let loose such malignant invectives as daring hurt the dignity of (the North’s) supreme leadership, fully revealing her true colors as a confrontation maniac,” the committee said.
“What she uttered is nothing but a reckless provocation made by a mentally deranged person bereft of reason and face,” it said.
The North, angered by United Nations sanctions sparked by its nuclear test in February and joint South-US military drills, has stoked tensions for months with blistering threats of nuclear war against Seoul and Washington.
But friction has appeared to ebb since North Korea moved medium-range missiles off their launch sites.
In Beijing, Kim’s envoy told China’s President Xi Jinping on Friday that Pyongyang is willing to take positive actions to solve problems through dialogue, according to Xinhua news agency.
On Thursday, Park said she would use her trip to Beijing next month to enlist China’s help in making North Korea realize its bad behavior would never be rewarded.
“Though China says it can’t do everything alone, China still is a country that can exercise considerable influence” over North Korea, she said.
“I want to talk in such a direction so that (China) can actively exercise positive influence,” she said.
Park said the international community should tell North Korea “with one voice consistently that there cannot be any reward whatsoever for provocations.”