N. Korea Ready for Talks or War

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SEOUL - North Korea's foreign ministry spokesman said on Tuesday her country is ready for either dialogue or war with the U.S.

"The DPRK [North Korea] is fully ready for dialogue and war," Pyongyang's state-run news agency quoted spokesman Jiang Yu as saying.

"It [North Korea] will continue bolstering up its nuclear deterrent as long as the U.S. military threats and provocations go on," she said.

Her comments came as the U.S. and South Korea launched the annual Key Resolve/Foal Eagle exercise, which involves 18,000 U.S. and 20,000 South Korean troops.

North Korea regards the exercise as provocative, essentially war games, while South Korea and the U.S. say the yearly two-week exercise hones their defense readiness.

Jiang Yu referred to the drill as "nuclear war exercises aimed at mounting a preemptive attack" on North Korea.

The communist nation put its military on full alert Monday and said they are prepared to target South Korean facilities.

Last April, North Korea walked out on the six-nation disarmament talks before testing its nuclear weapons for a second time in May.

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AFP contributed to this report.

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