SEOUL — North Korea denounced on Monday what it called increased surveillance of North Korea by US allies under the guise of monitoring United Nations (UN) sanctions violations, and said it will take necessary steps to protect its sovereignty and security, according to state media KCNA.

Pyongyang called out the United Kingdom (UK), Canada, Germany, France, New Zealand and Australia to immediately stop their “blatant military intervention in the Asia-Pacific” by using UN sanctions as an excuse, in a statement by its foreign ministry via KCNA.

“The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea will take necessary measures to thoroughly protect its sovereignty and safety” concerning such surveillance, KCNA said without elaborating, using North Korea’s official name.

South Korea and the UK carried out joint maritime patrols in waters near the Korean Peninsula in April to enforce UN Security Council sanctions resolutions against North Korea, South Korea’s defense ministry had said.

Meanwhile, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un visited arms factories on Saturday and Sunday, personally inspecting weapons such as sniper rifles and rocket launchers, KCNA said on Monday.

Mr. Kim, accompanied by high-ranking officials including his powerful sister Kim Yo Jong, praised the quality of the weapons and called for the factories to implement production plans without fail, KCNA said. — Reuters