North Korea Declares Itself a Nuclear-Armed State


A North Korean military parade. North Korea now officially describes itself as a nuclear state.

North Korean soldiers hold their weapons during a military parade. North Korean now describes itself as a nuclear-armed state. PEDRO UGARTE/AFP/Getty Images

North Korea seems determined to continue their threatened nuclear testing.  On Wednesday the North announced a change to their constitution to declare themselves a nuclear-armed state.

The updated constitution reads, “…Kim Jong-Il turned our fatherland into an invincible state of political ideology, a nuclear-armed state and an indomitable military power…” adding “nuclear-armed state” to their preamble.

Dr. Yuseok Seo of the Institute of North Korea Studies, Seoul, says:

[Dr. Yuseok Seo, Institute of North Korea Studies]:
“The North has told the US to acknowledge North Korea as a nuclear-armed nation.”

“The US has said to North Korea, if the North goes ahead with nuclear tests again, they will send weapons and military to South Korea.”

But Dr. Seo says this could pose more of a threat to China than to North Korea.

[Dr. Yuseok Seo, Institute of North Korea Studies]:
“That could threaten China rather than North Korea. China is quite worried about South Korea’s increasing military power.”

So this time, he says, China has been proactive against this latest round of threatened nuclear tests in North Korea.

[Dr. Yuseok Seo, Institute of North Korea Studies]:
“China and the world’s response has been very negative to the proposed nuclear tests.   Most of all, China’s response was against the testing, unlike before.”

According to Yonhap News Agency, over the weekend at the 11th Asia Security Summit, the United States, South Korea and Japan have agreed to strengthen cooperation to deal with North Korean aggression.
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