PYONGYANG: North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un Saturday saluted as ranks of goose-stepping soldiers followed by tanks and other military hardware paraded in Pyongyang for a show of strength with tensions mounting over his nuclear ambitions.
After inspecting an honour guard, Kim, in a black suit, watched the parade pour into Kim Il-Sung Square, accompanied by top military and party leaders, state television showed in a live broadcast.
Led by rows of military bands, columns of troops toting rifles and a troupe of sword-wielding female soldiers marched into the vast square in the heart of the city which was festooned in the national colours of blue, white and red.
"Today's parade will provide a chance to display our powerful military might," a male voiceover said on the TV broadcast.
Ostensibly the event is to mark the 105th anniversary of the birth of Kim's grandfather, the North's founder Kim Il-Sung -- a date known as the "Day of the Sun" in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the country's official name.
But it is also intended to send an unmistakable message to Washington about the isolated, nuclear-armed North's military might.
Kim did not address the rally, but his close aide Choe Ryong-Hae gave a defiant speech saying that Pyongyang would react in kind to any provocation -- nuclear or otherwise.
"We're prepared to respond to an all-out war with an all-out war and we are ready to hit back with nuclear attacks of our own style against any nuclear attacks," Choe said. (APP)