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NKorea criticizes SKorea's new defense chief

December 5, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
In a statement on Sunday, North Korea criticized South Korea's new defense chief for threatening to launch air strikes against the North.The North also accused the south of causing "uncontrollable, extreme" tension on the peninsula.

Friday, the South's Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin said jets would bomb the North if it stages another attack, like the shelling last month on a front line island.

Kim took office Saturday, replacing a predecessor who resigned amid criticism that South Korea's response to the Nov. 23 attack was too slow and weak.

Four South Koreans were killed in the attack - two South Korean marines and two civilians.

Despite the recent attack, the Defense Ministry believes it's unlikely North Korea would launch a full-scale war as it could not wage a conflict for long and because of South Korea's solid military alliance with the U.S., Yonhap news agency reported Sunday citing the military.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.