In Pyongyang’s most challenging declaration yet, the world’s most isolated state announced that it would continue its provocative nuclear tests and missile tests with its target being the DPRK’s avowed enemy, the United States.
Ever since the death of Dear Leader Kim Jong-il in 2011, the regime in Pyongyang was consumed with establishing his successor, Kim Jong-un, as the leader of North Korea and have limited their confrontational approach with the United States until this message which can be interpreted as a direct challenge from North Korea to the US.
In response to a US-backed motion to censure North Korea in the United Nations Security Council, the DPRK’s National Defense Commission said this:
We are not disguising the fact that the various satellites and long-range rockets that we will fire and the high-level nuclear test we will carry out are targeted at the United States.
The UNSC (Security Council) resolution masterminded by the US has brought its hostile policy towards the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (North Korea) to its most dangerous stage
The UNSC resolution was supported by the DPRK’s regional ally, China, however the PRC also supported such measures in 2006 and 2009 when North Korea also defied the United Nations and conducted nuclear tests.
North Korea’s latest nuclear test could arrive by early February in order to test South Korea’s newly-elected President Park Geun-hye, daughter of former Republic of Korea President Park Chung-hee.
Estimates from the Institute for Science and International Security argue North Korea has enough weapons grade uranium for 21-32 nuclear weapons by 2016 if it uses only one centrifuge at its Yongbyon nuclear plant to enrich uranium to weapons grade.
Such a bellicose statement from the DPRK’s powerful National Defense Commission, of which Kim Jong-il is ‘eternal chair’ and Kim Jong-un is ‘first chair,’ quashed Pyongyang-watchers hopes that the regime of Kim Jong-un would pursue a different path than his father’s regime.