North Korea on Friday warned the South that it would carry out a "merciless attack" against it if South Korean activists are not stopped from sending propaganda pamphlets over the border, the New York Times reported.
South Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin was quick to fire back that "we will eradicate their origin of attack."
Park Sang Hak, the North Korean dissident who is spearheading the effort to use balloons to send anti-Pyongyang pamphlets over the border, said the plan would move forward regardless of the North's threat.
Pyongyang-controlled media warned an attack would follow on the South "without warning" at the first sign of balloons being sent over the border.
Harsh threats are fairly typical for North Korea though they arrive at a delicate time for the South, which is preparing to hold presidential elections in December. Seoul has called on Pyongyang to refrain from any provocations that might impact the voting.
Friday's threat was associated with a particular region of South Korea.
The North's Korean Central News Agency said "South Korea inhabitants at Imjin Pavilion and its surrounding area are requested to evacuate in anticipation of possible damage" to the border city in the event of an attack by the North, the Yonhap News Agency reported.
On Thursday, South Korea was elected to a two-year seat on the powerful U.N. Security Council. Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan said his government would use its temporary seat to discourage North Korea from carrying out new hostilities and "to further solidify peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and around the globe," Yonhap separately reported.