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SEOUL, South Korea – North Korea said Thursday that South Korea fabricated evidence implicating the North in a torpedo attack in order to pick on the North and any attempt at retaliating for the warship's sinking would be answered with "all-out war."
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak vowed "stern action" for the attack after a multinational investigation issued its long-awaited results Thursday, concluding the North fired a torpedo that sank the Cheonan navy ship March 26 near the Koreas' tense sea border.
"If the (South Korean) enemies try to deal any retaliation or punishment, or if they try sanctions or a strike on us .... we will answer to this with all-out war," Col. Pak In Ho of North Korea's navy told broadcaster APTN in an exclusive interview in Pyongyang.
An international civilian-military investigation team said evidence overwhelmingly proves a North Korean submarine fired a homing torpedo that caused a massive underwater blast that tore the Cheonan apart. Fifty-eight sailors were rescued from the frigid Yellow Sea, but 46 perished in the South's worst military disaster since the Korean War.