North Korea conducted its third nuclear test in the remote, snowy northeast on Tuesday, taking a crucial step toward its goal of building a bomb small enough to be fitted on a missile capable of striking the United States, and in response, Iran said the world must work for total nuclear disarmament.
North Korea said the atomic test was merely its “first response” to what it called U.S. threats, and said it will continue with unspecified “second and third measures of greater intensity” if Washington maintains its hostility, The Associated Press reported.
Commenting on the underground nuclear test, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said on Tuesday, “We have to reach a point where no country will carry out military nuclear activities, and all nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction will be destroyed, but on the other hand, all countries will have the right to use nuclear know-how for peaceful purposes.”
In addition, the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman called on the nuclear weapons states to “initiate disarmament”, saying, “As long as those who give admonition are among nuclear violators, it cannot be expected that a world free of nuclear weapons will be established.”
North Korea said the device was smaller than in previous tests.
“The test was conducted in a safe and perfect way on a high level, with the use of a smaller and light A-bomb, unlike the previous ones, yet with great explosive power,” North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said, confirming speculation that seismic activity near Kilju around midday was a nuclear test.
The test is likely to draw more sanctions from the United States and its allies.
Several UN resolutions bar North Korea from conducting nuclear or missile tests because the UN Security Council considers Pyongyang a would-be proliferator of weapons of mass destruction and its nuclear testing a threat to international peace and stability. North Korea dismisses that as a double standard, and claims the right to build nuclear weapons as a defense against the United States, which has been seen as enemy No. 1 since the 1950-53 Korean War. The U.S. stations more than 28,000 troops in South Korea.
On Tuesday, North Korea told the UN disarmament forum that it would never bow to resolutions on its nuclear program and that prospects for the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula were “gloomy” because of a hostile U.S. policy, according to Reuters.
“The U.S. and their followers are sadly mistaken if they miscalculate the DPRK would respect the entirely unreasonable resolutions against it. The DPRK will never bow to any resolutions,” Jon Yong Ryong, first secretary of North Korea's mission in Geneva, told the Conference on Disarmament, referring to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).
“If the EU (European Union) truly wants peace and security on the Korean peninsula, it should urge the U.S. first to terminate its hostile policy towards DPRK on an impartial basis,” he said.
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