North Korea Threatens Nuclear Test, Defying U.N.


Photo

North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, center, at a rocket launch drill, in a photo released March 11.

Credit
Korean Central News Agency, via Reuters

SEOUL, South Korea — The North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, said his country would soon conduct another nuclear test and also flight-test ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads, the country’s state-run news media reported Tuesday.

If Mr. Kim follows through with those threats, that would mean North Korea was readying its fifth nuclear test and was preparing to conduct more missile launchings in defiance of the sanctions resolution the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted this month against the country.

Mr. Kim declared that “a nuclear warhead explosion test and a test-fire of several kinds of ballistic rockets able to carry nuclear warheads will be conducted in a short time to further enhance the reliance of nuclear attack capability,” the North’s official Korean Central News Agency reported Tuesday.

Mr. Kim made the comments while observing officials conducting a simulation test of re-entry technology, the news agency said. The technology is needed for a warhead on an intercontinental ballistic missile to survive heat and turbulence while plunging through the atmosphere toward its target.

Although North Korea has repeatedly threatened to launch nuclear strikes against the United States, officials and analysts have questioned how close the country has come to acquiring such technology, as well as the ability to guide a long-range missile.

Although Mr. Kim said that his country has the re-entry technology, it has never flight-tested a long-range missile.

Fears have grown, however, that the country was mastering technologies to build such a missile. It launched a long-range rocket to put a satellite into orbit on Feb. 7. On Jan. 6, it conducted its fourth nuclear test.

Since the sanctions resolution, North Korea has issued a series of threats and claims about its nuclear ability.

It threatened to launch “pre-emptive” nuclear strikes at the United States. It also said that it had “standardized” miniaturized nuclear warheads to be fitted on its missiles. Last Friday, the North said Mr. Kim had ordered more nuclear tests, though it did not give a time frame.

On Sunday, a North Korean website quoted a nuclear scientist as saying that the country had a hydrogen bomb, and that if it were dropped on Manhattan, “all its residents will die instantly and the whole city will turn into piles of ashes.” The North has said a hydrogen bomb was tested on Jan. 6, though American officials dismissed that claim, given the blast’s relatively small explosive power.

It is often difficult to tell propaganda from a genuine threat in North Korean statements. The country tends to sound more bellicose and bombastic when the United States and South Korea conduct joint annual war games, as they are doing now.



Source link

About admin

Check Also

Iran, California, Harvey Weinstein: Your Friday Evening Briefing

Our resident expert on the Affordable Care Act says that the move could end up ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *