N. Korea renews call for combat readiness on military founding anniversary

North Korea on Thursday urged its armed forces to be equipped with full combat readiness as the country marked the 76th founding anniversary of the Korean People's Army (KPA). In an editorial, the North's main newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, claimed the KPA is well-equipped with "overwhelming" military capability to deter war schemes by imperialist powers and called on the military to further beef up its combat power against hostile forces. In a separate article, the newspaper said the KPA is determined to "completely devastate" the base of hostile forces should it attempt to inflict the slightest damage on the dignity of North Korea and its people. On the domestic front, the newspaper said the KPA will take part in the struggle to implement the ruling party's policy to develop the North's regional economy. In 2023, North Korea held a nighttime military parade where it first showcased the Hwasong-18 intercontinental ballistic missile to mark the 75th founding anniversary of the armed forces. Signs of such majo r events have yet to be seen this year as the North usually marks every fifth and 10th of key anniversaries with large-scale events. Source: Yonhap News Agency