North Korea warns of consequences for US spy planes violating its airspace

U.S. Air Force photo

A spokesperson for the North Korean Ministry of National Defense said the country is prepared to react against any US spy planes violating its airspace. 

In a statement shared on July 10, 2023, by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), North Korea accused the US of having “intensified espionage activities beyond the wartime level” with a US spy aircraft conducting “provocative” flights for eight consecutive days in July 2023.  

“The US will surely have to pay a dear price for its provocative air espionage, frantically staged even invading the opposite side’s air space without previous notice,” the unnamed military official said. 

North Korea cautioned the US to remember past incidents such as the downing of its spy plane EC-121 in 1969, the intrusion of a reconnaissance helicopter along the Military Demarcation Line in 1994, and a perilous situation in March 2003, when four armed North Korean MiGs jets approached a US RC-135 and flew alongside the US jet for a duration of 20 minutes, occasionally closing in at a distance of just 50 feet.  

The North Korean government has also expressed disapproval of Washington’s plans to deploy a nuclear missile submarine close to the Korean peninsula. 

This warning comes as South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol prepares to encourage NATO countries to display their readiness to prevent nuclear aggression from Pyongyang at the annual NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania. 

Despite United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions prohibiting such actions, North Korea has continued more than 100 ballistic missile tests since the beginning of 2022 and is suspected to be preparing for the seventh nuclear test. 

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