SEOUL, South Korea – The Latest on North Korean tensions (all times local):
North Korea has called U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to relist the country as a state sponsor of terrorism a "serious provocation" that justifies its development of nuclear weapons.
The North's official Korean Central News Agency said Wednesday that the country has no connection to terrorism and "doesn't care whether or not the United States places the hat of terrorism on our heads."
The agency said the action by the United States was a "violent infringement" of North Korea's rights and shows it should continue to "firmly grab the treasured nuclear sword" to protect itself from American hostility.
Experts say the U.S. decision to put North Korea back on its terrorism blacklist will have limited practical effects, but may make a diplomatic solution of the nuclear standoff more difficult.
North Korea has yet to comment on the defection of a North Korean soldier who is being treated for gunshot wounds in South Korea after being shot by comrades during his escape.