File Photo: Photo provided by Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Dec. 2, 2016 shows top leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Kim Jong Un (unseen) guiding an intensive artillery drill on Dec. 1, 2016. (Xinhua/KCNA)
NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Donald Trump has "declared a war" on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), the country's top diplomat said here on Monday.
"Last weekend, Trump claimed that our leadership wouldn't be around much longer. He declared a war on our country," Ri Yong-ho, the DPRK foreign minister, told reporters.
"Since the United States declared war on our country, we will have every right to take countermeasures, including the right to shoot down U.S. strategic bombers even when they are not inside the airspace border of our country," Ri said.
On Saturday, U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers and F-15C Eagle fighter escorts flew in international airspace over waters east of the DPRK, the Pentagon said.
"This is the farthest north of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) any U.S. fighter or bomber aircraft have flown" off the DPRK's coast in the 21st century, said the Pentagon, adding that the move underscored "the seriousness with which we take DPRK's reckless behavior."
U.S. President Donald Trump also talked tough on the DPRK. In his first speech at the UN General Assembly on Sept. 19, Trump threatened that the United States "will have no choice than to totally destroy" the country unless Pyongyang refrains from its nuclear tests and missile launches.
Trump also signed a new order to ramp up sanctions on the DPRK on Sept. 21.
In response, DPRK's top leader Kim Jong Un vowed to retaliate, saying Trump "will face results beyond his expectation."
"I am now thinking hard about what response he could have expected when he allowed such eccentric words to trip off his tongue," Kim was quoted by the official Korean Central News Agency as saying in a statement released on Friday.
Kim also accused Trump of uttering "unprecedented rude nonsense that one has never heard from any of his predecessors," saying the threat to "totally destroy" a sovereign state has gone beyond the limit.