Kim Jong Un's sister threatens military action against Seoul over declining relations

North Korean leader Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnTrump's missed opportunities: The top three blunders of the past year Overnight Defense: Most VA workers find racism 'moderate to serious problem' at facilities l Trump advisers were wary of talking military options over fears he'd accidentally start war Trump advisers were wary of talking military options over fears he'd accidentally start war: report MORE’s powerful sister threatened military action against South Korea over declining diplomatic relations with Seoul and what she said was its inability to stop leaflets from defectors from pouring over the border.

Kim Yo Jong, who is first vice department director of the ruling Workers’ Party’s Central Committee, panned South Korea as the “enemy” and said public opinion has determined that the South should pay the “dearest price.”

“Getting stronger day by day are the unanimous voices of all our people demanding for surely settling accounts with the riff-raff who dared hurt the absolute prestige of our Supreme Leader representing our country and its great dignity and flied rubbish to the inviolable territory of our side and with those who connived at such hooliganism, whatever may happen,” Kim said in a statement carried by state media outlet KCNA. 

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“The judgment that we should force the betrayers and human scum to pay the dearest price for their crimes and the retaliatory action plans we have made on this basis have become a firm public opinion at home, not part of the work of the field in charge of the affairs with enemy," she continued. "It is necessary to make them keenly feel what they have done and what inviolability they hurt amiss.”

Kim added that North Korea “will soon take action” and that she ordered the military to “decisively carry out the next action.”

"If I drop a hint of our next plan the south Korean authorities are anxious about, the right to taking the next action against the enemy will be entrusted to the General Staff of our army," she said. "Our army, too, will determine something for cooling down our people's resentment and surely carry out it, I believe."

The statement is the latest indication that relations between Seoul and Pyongyang have soured over activist groups in the South sending anti-government leaflets across the border into North Korea.

North Korea, which is notoriously sensitive to criticism of the leader, has long labeled the leaflets a propaganda tactic. In an effort to ease tensions, Seoul announced Wednesday it would press charges against two groups for floating anti-Pyongyang leaflets across the border, though North Korea has cut off communication with its southern neighbor.  

Pyongyang has effectively cut all cooperation with Seoul, in part over frustration over lack of progress in nuclear talks with the U.S.

Kim is in charge of relations with South Korea, though the liaison office in Kaesong, which was a key achievement in talks between the two countries, has been shut down due to the coronavirus.