Chairing a meeting of top military intelligence and police officials at the presidential office, Park said the military "should deter North Korean provocations" by maintaining a firm military preparedness "without any holes" as security on the Korean Peninsula was increasingly becoming unpredictable.

The president said firm security and military defence was the most important base in a road to opening an era of unified Korea, denouncing North Korea for continuing its development of nuclear weapons and long-range missile and maintaining its strategy of developing nuclear bombs and stimulating the economy.

In December 2014, South Korea had offered to hold high-level talks with North Korea in January to discuss all issues of mutual concern, but Pyongyang has kept mum about the proposal and has said that Seoul should accept preconditions such as stopping anti-North Korean leaflets and the suspension of joint annual war games with the US this year.

Park's comments on Thursday came ahead of joint annual military exercises between Seoul and Washington scheduled for March to April. North Korea proposed to suspend its nuclear tests in return for the halt of the joint drills, a proposal flatly rejected by the two countries.

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