People watch a TV news report showing North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, and other leaders, at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Saturday, March 30, 2013.

North Korea warned early Thursday that its military has been cleared to attack the U.S. using “smaller, lighter and diversified nuclear” weapons, while the U.S. said it was strengthening protection in the region and seeking to defuse the situation. Despite the intense rhetoric, analysts do not expect a nuclear attack by North Korea, which knows the move could trigger a destructive, suicidal war that no one in the region wants. It’s not believed to have the ability to launch nuclear-tipped missiles, but its other nuclear capabilities aren’t fully known.

 

Acting on one of its threats, North Korean border authorities have refused to allow entry to South Koreans who manage jointly run factories in the North Korean city of Kaesong. Trucks carrying cargo and South Korean workers were turned back Wednesday and again Thursday morning.

 


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