U.S. President Donald Trump says his country is prepared to defend itself and allies “using the full range of diplomatic, conventional, and nuclear capabilities” after North Korea’s test of what it called a hydrogen bomb capable of being loaded on a long-range missile.
Trump’s comments on September 3 follow remarks by U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis that any threats to the United States would be “met with a massive military response” and that North Korea risked “total annihilation” with its actions.
Meanwhile, on the Korean Peninsula, South Korea’s military said its air forces and the army had carried out a nuclear-missile exercise in response to Pyongyang’s detonation of the suspected hydrogen bomb.
The country’s Joint Chiefs of Staff early on September 4 said the military conducted the live-fire exercise simulating an attack on the North’s nuclear site, hitting “designated targets in the East Sea.”
Already-high tensions have risen further after North Korea said it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb capable of being loaded onto an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
North Korea state media said Pyongyang’s sixth nuclear test was a “perfect success” and was a “meaningful” step in completing the country’s nuclear weapons program.
North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic-missile program are banned by United Nations resolutions, but Pyongyang has continued to carry out tests in defiance of nearly all world powers.
In a rare show of unity, the international community strongly condemned the latest nuclear test, with China urging the secretive communist state to stop “wrong” actions and Russia saying it could lead to “serious consequences.”
source: Reuters, AFP and AP