North Korea has staged its largest ever military drill to mark the founding of the country’s army, amid rising tensions with the West. A statement from the South Korean military said the live-fire exercises were in the Wonsan region in the east of the country Tuesday afternoon, the event that it was the largest ever drill conducted by the country’s military and involved 300 artillery guns. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un gave the order to start the demonstration, where the large-caliber self-propelled guns lined up along the coast opened fire. Military exercises such as the one undertaken by North Korea are not unprecedented and it was always likely there would have been a show of military force on Armed Forces Day. But the timing, as the US increases its military presence in the area, allows North Korea to remind its opponents that it could cause crippling damage with conventional artillery to highly populated areas in South Korea.