North Korea said on Saturday that nearly 3.5 million workers, party members and soldiers volunteered to join or rejoin its army to fight against the U.S. in the current geopolitical tension between Pyongyang and Washington.
Rodong Sinmun, North Korea’s official newspaper, said the volunteers had offered to join or rejoin the People’s Army after the Korea Central News Agency (KCNA) issued a statement on Monday condemning new sanctions imposed by the UN in retaliation for North Korean missile tests.
North Korea threatened to strike the United States and its Pacific territory of Guam.
KCNA said on Wednesday a mass rally was held in Pyongyang to support the government. North Korea has previously mobilized large crowds to show its resolve when tensions escalate.
In August 2015, one million North Koreans offered to enlist or re-enlist in the army when a mine exploded in the demilitarized zone between the two Koreas, raising additional tensions.
North Korea warned foreign diplomats to leave Pyongyang in 2013 when it suspended work at a joint inter-Korean industrial park and threatened missile strikes on U.S. Pacific bases, notably in Guam and Hawaii.
NAN reports that on Aug. 5, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2371, which further tightens sanctions against North Korea in response to Pyongyang’s recent ballistic missiles tests.