Related News

Home » World

NK threats of nuclear tests if no UN apology

THE Democratic People's Republic of Korea has threatened to conduct nuclear and missile tests unless the United Nations apologizes for criticizing its April 5 rocket launch, dramatically raising its stake in the worsening standoff over its atomic programs.

Pyongyang's Foreign Ministry said yesterday that the country "will be compelled to take additional self-defensive measures" unless the UN Security Council apologized immediately.

"The measures will include nuclear tests and test-firings of intercontinental ballistic missiles."

Pyongyang conducted its first atomic test blast in 2006 and is thought to have enough plutonium to make at least half a dozen nuclear bombs.

But the country is not believed to have mastered the technology to make a nuclear warhead small enough to put on a missile.

The UN Council adopted a statement earlier this month denouncing the North's rocket launch and calling for tightening sanctions.

Pyongyang has claimed the rebuke is unfair because the liftoff was a peaceful satellite launch. But the US and others believe it was a test of long-range missile technology.

The threat came days after the North said it had begun reprocessing spent nuclear fuel rods at its Yongbyon nuclear complex - a move aimed at harvesting weapons-grade plutonium.

That announcement came hours after the UN blacklisted three North Korean companies.

The Security Council should apologize for infringing on the North's sovereignty and "withdraw all its unreasonable and discriminative resolutions and decisions" against the North, the ministry said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency.

Professor Kim Yong-hyun at Seoul's Dongguk University said the North's threat "appears to be rhetoric for now."

"The North is trying to maximize the stakes as the United States keeps ignoring it," he said.

The North's ministry also said the country was to build a light-water nuclear reactor and start developing technologies to produce nuclear fuel, a threat that Kim said means that it would start enriching uranium - another type of nuclear bomb ingredient.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend