Pyongyang will not hesitate to strike South Korea if Washington launches an attack on its territory, a former North Korean diplomat and defector from the state’s regime has warned.  While the US has not ruled out a military option against North Korea amid heightened tensions in the peninsula, one of the highest-ranking North Korean defectors, Thae Yong-ho, has said that a military scenario would prompt Pyongyang to direct its fire at its southern neighbors.

“North Korean officers are trained to press the button without any further instructions from the general command if anything happens on their side,” Thae Yong-ho told a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Committee entitled “An Insider’s Look at the North Korean Regime” on Wednesday. “If there is any sound of fire or bomb or strike from Americans, the military artilleries and short-range missiles will fire against South Korea,” Thae added. CONTINUE