A South Korean army's K-55 A1 self-propelled howitzer fires during a military exercise in Yeoncheon near the demilitarized zone that divides the two Koreas, South Korea, on Wednesday. (Lim Byung-shick/Yonhap via AP)
UNITED NATIONS — North Korea has asked for an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council to protest upcoming U.S.-South Korean military exercises.
North Korea says the exercises, to take place in mid-August, are dangerous and increase the threat of war.
North Korea's deputy ambassador Ri Tong Il criticized the council at a press conference Friday for its failure to respond to the country's July 21 letter requesting a meeting.
Ri said North Korea has repeatedly urged the United States and South Korea to stop military exercises. He warned that if they continue, any spark could lead to war, and Washington and Seoul will be responsible.
He again accused the U.S. of "nuclear blackmail" and said North Korea will respond to any nuclear or missile attack with nuclear weapons or missiles.