North Korea is likely to stage a major military parade next month similar to the previous one in April last year, South Korean defense authorities said Monday.
The secretive North is apparently preparing for a large-scale military parade on Feb. 8, the eve of the opening of the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games in the South, according to multiple reports.
It's aimed to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Korean People's Army (KPA), a national event that it used to mark on April 25.
"(We) are constantly tracking and monitoring the related move in coordination with the U.S.," Army Col. Roh Jae-cheon, spokesman for the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), told reporters.
He stressed that the allies are maintaining a full posture against the possibility that the North's military parade will lead to a provocation.
|North Korea unveils what is believed to be its intercontinental ballistic missile during a military parade on April 15, 2017, in this file photo. (Yonhap)|
Asked about concerns that the North will showcase its intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), Roh said the parade, if held, is expected to follow a "similar pattern" of the April 15 one in 2016 to mark the birth anniversary of late founding leader Kim Il-sung.
At that time, the North revealed a lineup of its various ballistic missiles, including what appears to be a new ICBM and submarine-launched ones.
"We have all possibilities in mind," keeping a close eye on the North's activity, added Roh.
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