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North Korea issues angry response to US sanctions for Sony hack

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Restrictions show America's 'inveterate repugnancy'

North Korea has accused the US of "groundlessly stirring up bad blood" towards the country after imposing sanctions in response to the alleged hack on Sony Pictures. A spokesperson for North Korea’s Foreign Ministry denied that the country had been involved in the cyberattack on the movie studio and said that Washington’s refusal to participate in a joint investigation to find the real culprits revealed its "guilty conscience."

The US has described the sanctions as only the "first" part of its response

The US announced new economic sanctions against Pyongyang on Friday, targeting 10 individuals and three North Korean entities, including the country's primary intelligence agency. North Korea's response this Sunday said that the US was attempting to further isolate the country from the international community, and that the sanctions only strengthened its resolve to pursue its military-first policy.

"The policy persistently pursued by the US to stifle the DPRK [North Korea], groundlessly stirring up bad blood towards it, would only harden its will and resolution to defend the sovereignty of the country," a spokesperson for North Korea reportedly told state-run KCNA news agency. "The persistent and unilateral action taken by the White House to slap 'sanctions' against the DPRK patently proves that it is still not away from inveterate repugnancy and hostility toward the DPRK."

North Korea previously praised the hacks on Sony as a "righteous deed" and described The Interview — a comedy about the assassination of the North’s leader Kim Jong-Un — as an "act of war." Although the FBI has officially declared North Korea responsible for the cyberattack on Sony Pictures, a number of private security specialists have expressed doubt that the country was involved.