South Korea’s defence ministry says the threat was made in a message sent by the North’s highest military body through a hotline.
South Korean activists burned effigies of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and his late father and grandfather in anti-Pyongyang protests on Tuesday.
The rallies coincided with commemorations in North Korea, which were marking the second anniversary of the death of Kim Jong-Il.
The North said the rallies had insulted the “highest dignity” of its leadership and threatened to take “merciless” retaliatory acts without prior warning, Seoul’s defence ministry said.
“We’ve sent a reply vowing to react sternly to any provocations by North Korea,” ministry spokesman Kim Min-Seok said.
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Meanwhile, South Korea has announced it will set up a new security control tower to counter threats from Pyongyang, while a standing committee and secretariat of the National Security Council would be established.
Ju Chul-Ki, a top security official in the office of President Park Geun-Hye, said that will see the president hold high-level security talks about once a week.
Such security talks are currently only held on orders from President Park.
Seoul remains on alert, after the man who had previously been North Korea’s second most powerful man was executed.
Jang Song-Thaek was the uncle and previous mentor of leader Kim Jong-Un.
Both South Korea and the United States have warned of possible provocative acts by the nuclear-armed North.
The three-year deal was finalized on Monday and fundamentally changes the way Japanese players are acquired by MLB clubs.
Now, if an NPB Club wishes to make one of its players available to Major League Clubs, they will notify the MLB Commissioner of the player’s availability and the release feethat must be paid to the NPB Club in order to secure release. The NPB Club may not set the release fee higher than $20 million and the fee cannot be changed once set by the NPB Club.
The Commissioner’s Office will then post the player by notifying all MLB clubs of both the availability of the player and the fee sought by the NPB Club.
Postings must be made between Nov. 1 and Feb. 1.
A 30-day period begins the day after the player is posted, and concluding 30 days later, with any Major League Club willing to pay the release free to negotiate a contract with the posted player.
If a team is able to reach an agreement with the player, the fee will then be paid out to his NPB club in installments.
Should the player fail to reach an agreement with an MLB club, the release fee is not owed and the player may not be posted again until the following November.
Under the current system, teams submit their top bids in secret with the highest bidder getting an exclusive negotiating window to sign the player.
The deal comes as MLB teams wait to hear about the potential availability of the latest Japanese phenom pitcher, Masahiro Tanaka.
The New York Yankees were believed to be the front-runners for Tanaka, since their deep pockets would allow them to submit a high posting bid, while only having Tanaka’s salary count towards luxury tax.
However, under the new system that advantage would no longer play in the Yankees favour. Since only the posting fee is luxury tax-exempt. The change levels the playing field, giving players like Tanaka the ability to choose between whichever clubs deem his services worthy of a maximum bid.
Whether or not Tanaka gets posted still remains to be seen as his club - the Rakuten Golden Eagles - has been going back and forth on whether to actually make him available. Tanaka reportedly wants to play in North America, but the change to the system has made posting him less lucrative to his Japanese club.
The highest bid ever submitted by an MLB club for a Japanese free agent came in January of 2012 when the Texas Rangers paid a reported $51.7 million for the right to negotiate with pitcher YuDarvish.
The Rangers and Darvish took almost the full allotted month to reach an agreement, with Darvish settling for a six-year, $60 million contract on the final day of the negotiating window.
MONDAY, August 19 (HealthDay News) — Chances are you know at least one person who’s given up eating gluten. Maybe you’ve even given it up yourself. But who can really benefit from a gluten-free diet?
"Gluten is one of the main proteins found in wheat, barley and rye," said Dr. Joseph Levy, division director of pediatric gastroenterology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City. "It’s actually a group of proteins and not a single component, but gluten is the general term."
In baking, it plays a key role. “Gluten is responsible for the way dough is able to rise when you put yeast in it,” Levy explained. “It’s the structure of gluten that makes baked goods light and crispy. If you try to cook with gluten-free flour it won’t have the same airiness. The dough is heavier, and the finished product will be flat and heavy.”
But though gluten might make for a flaky croissant, it can cause a number of problems for certain people.
Registered dietician Rachel Begun, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, said that three types of people may not be able to eat products containing gluten: people with celiac disease, people with gluten sensitivity or intolerance, and people with a wheat allergy.
"Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder, and when gluten is eaten, the body triggers an attack on the intestines," Begun said. "Damage occurs over time, and nutrients can’t be absorbed."
Levy said that “even tiny amounts of gluten trigger an immune-mediated attack on the lining of the bowel.” For someone with celiac disease, “it’s important that you don’t have any exposure to gluten,” he said.
One problem, though, is that people aren’t always aware that they have celiac disease. In fact, a study published last year in the American Journal of Gastroenterology found that almost 80 percent of people with celiac disease don’t know they have it.
Celiac disease often has no symptoms for years, Begun said, and is often discovered because of the problems it creates, such as anemia or osteoporosis.
Another group of people who might benefit from forgoing gluten are those who have what’s called gluten sensitivity. “We’re just starting to recognize this non-celiac-related sensitivity to gluten,” Levy said.
"When they eat gluten," he said, "they can have diarrhea or they may get bloated, nauseous, tired and achy." Begun added that people who are gluten-sensitive may also experience migraines and feel like they have a "foggy brain."
"Something is going on in the body that triggers these symptoms, but you don’t see damage to the intestine," she said. "There’s a lot of research 800-615-9630 on now in this area, but we don’t yet know if there are any long-term consequences of gluten sensitivity."
Others who might want to avoid gluten are those who are allergic to wheat. Begun said while there’s no specific allergy to gluten, some people with a wheat allergy choose to avoid gluten-containing products altogether due to the risk of cross-contamination with wheat.
Though it might seem logical to stop eating gluten to see if it’s at the root of your problems, both Levy and Begun noted that that’s an extremely bad idea. First, they said, you should see a gastroenterologist to be evaluated for celiac disease. Otherwise, stopping consumption of gluten can mask the true cause of your symptoms.
"A healthy diet really doesn’t need to change much when you give up gluten," she said. But people with celiac disease need to carefully watch for hidden sources of gluten. For example, she said, bottled salad dressings may contain gluten, as might soy sauce, medications, vitamins and even lip balm.
"For people with celiac disease, it’s not just a matter of trying to avoid gluten," Begun said. "They must avoid even tiny amounts of gluten."
Eating out gluten-free can be a challenge because restaurants don’t always understand that cross-contamination can be a problem, too. “If a gluten-free food touches something with gluten, someone with celiac can’t eat it,” Begun said. “The restaurant industry as a whole is trying hard and has come a long way.”
Friends and family can sometimes be more of an issue for someone with celiac disease. “There’s a lack of understanding about the need to avoid gluten 100 percent of the time,” she said.
But if you don’t have celiac disease — which affects about 2 million people in the United States, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health — there should be no harm in trying a gluten-free diet, Levy said, assuming that you’ve seen a doctor if you suspect celiac.
He said you can get all the nutrition you need from a gluten-free diet. But, he added a note of caution for those who eat gluten-free with the hope of losing weight.
"People who go on gluten-free diets tend to gain weight," Levy said. "People often substitute gluten-free flours and alternative baked goods, and too much of these foods can increase weight."
The American Gastroenterological Association has more about .
To read about one woman’s experience with a gluten-free diet .