Amid Missile Tension, SKorea President Urges Talks


But one diplomat described the situation in Pyongyang, on the condition that neither their name nor country be revealed, as "quite normal" and said life, such as it is in the reclusive totalitarian country, is continuing as normal.

Another diplomat, from another country, agreed, saying "everywhere is normal. Everyone is going about their business." The diplomat, who said he had been stationed in Pyongyang for "roughly two years," was cautious not to dismiss North Korea's threats as just rhetoric, but said "we are not unduly disturbed. Normally the people who should be disturbed are foreigners, but even the foreigners are not unduly disturbed," he said.

Pyongyang's main evening news also carried stories of students planting trees, a boxer defeating a Japanese player, and new commemorative post stamps for one of their most important holidays.

Only at the end of their newscast did the announcer repeatedly accuse the U.S. and South Korea of making Kaesong Industrial Complex a "base from which to initiate war." North Koreans have pulled out their laborers earlier this week from the joint North-South cooperative economic project built by South Korean investment just above the border. It was the symbol of the last remaining project between the two Koreas during the period of détente a decade ago.

"What North Korea wants is dialogue with the United States and South Korea. That's why they have been creating this hostile situation to a deadlock," said Jang Sung-min, a North Korea expert at the Korean Association of International Studies.

PHOTOS: An Inside Look at North Korea

South Korea's Unification Ministry on Thursday made an offer to save the project, saying "Pyongyang should come to the bargaining table immediately" and the suspension is "not helpful to the future of the nation as a whole, as it seriously hurts the tenant companies and the workers."

It's unclear whether the North heard South Korea's dialogue offer before putting out another statement of bellicose threats, its Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland said "the enemy's land is about to turn into all sea of fire when they just push the button."

The weapons of attack are ready standing by and the missile heads are accurately focused on targets, it claimed. The committee also denounced the South's government and conservative media for guessing that they "could not ever launch an all-out war, it is simply brinksmanship to raise stakes, and inside the North, it is business as usual."

ABC News' Joanne Kim and Hunny Jeong contributed to this report. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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