As North Korea continues to release inflammatory statements about joint U.S.-South Korea military exercises on its border, tensions between the two Koreas are rising higher than they have in recent years.
North Korea has stated that it is now at war and will now no longer abide by the Korean Armistice Agreement, which ended the Korean war in 1953. The country has gone so far as to cut off communication with South Korea, including hotlines meant to stave off war. Communication with U.S. and U.N. forces have also ceased.
U.S. officials have been playing down Pyongyang's rhetoric in recent weeks, likening it to the past posturing that North Korea is known for. However, chances are not being taken that the nuclear-armed country is merely bluffing.
According to a Reuters report, the U.S. has now deployed F-22 stealth fighter jets to South Korea. The jets will become a part of ongoing military drills, as well as a show of force to North Korea. The deployment of F-22s follows the deployment of B-2 stealth bombers to the Korean peninsula last week.
U.S. and South Korea have made it clear that any provocation by the North will result in a swift military response.
According to the Reuters report, North Korea this week convened a meeting of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea. At the meeting, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is reported to have stated that the country's nuclear weapons will not be on the table for future negotiations.