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North Korea says it has tested nuclear weapons that could ‘raze’ US targets

North Korea fired a missile over Japan last week, which traveled some 4,500 km before falling into the Pacific Ocean, something it had not done since 2017. It was the Asian country’s 23rd ballistic missile launch so far in 2022, the most shells fired in a single year since the leader Kim Jong Un He assumed power in 2012.

This Monday, Pyongyang confirmed that recent missile launchesbetween September 25 and October 9, were all “tactical nuclear” exercises personally watched by Kim.

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“The units of the Korean People’s Army in charge of the use of tactical nuclear weapons organized military exercises from September 25 to October 9 to verify and evaluate the country’s nuclear deterrence and counterattack capacity, which constitutes a stern warning to enemies. ”, published the state agency KCNA.

The North Korean People’s Army’s front-line long-range artillery division during a live-fire attack training exercise. (AFP).

The seven most recent tests, which the KCNA says are “Launching exercises of the tactical units of nuclear operations”allowed North Korean forces deploy “its capabilities in a real war”.

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The agency specified that the missile launch on October 4 that flew over Japan .

A pedestrian looks at a screen that shows news about the launch of a ballistic missile by North Korea over Japan, on October 4, 2022. (EFE/EPA/KIMIMASA MAYAMA).

A pedestrian looks at a screen that shows news about the launch of a ballistic missile by North Korea over Japan, on October 4, 2022. (EFE/EPA/KIMIMASA MAYAMA).

The regime insisted that these tactical nuclear weapons were to “attack and eliminate” possible targets of South Korea and of USA.

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The AP agency interprets that this announcement of the north korean regimepublished on the 77th anniversary of the ruler workers partyis an attempt to consolidate public support for Kim Jong Un in the face of economic difficulties associated with the coronavirus pandemic, a security threat posed by the strengthened military alliance between USA and South Korea, among other internal problems that overwhelm North Korea.

North Korean missiles.  (AFP).

North Korean missiles. (AFP).

“Through seven occasions of tactical nuclear operation unit launch drills, the real warfare capabilities (…) of combat forces ready to strike and eliminate marked targets anytime, anywhere were fully demonstrated. ”said the Korean Central News Agency.

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Korea of North also released numerous photographs of the recent missile launches and military exercises in which Kim appears supervising everythinggiving orders and posing with the soldiers.

The North Korean People's Army's long-range artillery division during a fire attack training exercise.  (AFP).

The North Korean People’s Army’s long-range artillery division during a fire attack training exercise. (AFP).

Kim Jong-un attends a large-scale air raid training exercise by the Korean People's Army.  (AFP).

Kim Jong-un attends a large-scale air raid training exercise by the Korean People’s Army. (AFP).

According to the AFP agency, analysts were struck by the fact that North Korea not present the latest launches as evidence of the missiles themselves, but of the launch units.

“That suggests these (launch) systems are mobilized,” Jeffrey Lewis of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies wrote on Twitter.

The North Korean People's Army's front-line long-range artillery division during a fire attack training exercise.  (AFP).

The North Korean People’s Army’s front-line long-range artillery division during a fire attack training exercise. (AFP).

Likewise, Korea of North said it conducted “a large-scale combined airstrike drill,” also overseen by Kim, in which “More than 150 fighters from different missions took off simultaneously for the first time in history.”

Response to military exercises

Korea of South, Japan and the United States intensified combined naval exercises in recent weeks, angering korea Northwhich considers the maneuvers as a rehearsal for an invasion and thus justified its missile launches.

KCNA also confirmed that the missile tests were in response to said maneuvers, in which the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan for the first time in five years.

Since a new conservative government took office in South Korea in May, the US and South Korean militaries have expanded their exercises, which had been scaled back due to the pandemic and now-stalled nuclear diplomacy between Pyongyang and Washington.

Kim Dong-yub, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul, told the AP that North Korea is trying to diversify its launch sites to make it more difficult for its enemies to identify launches in advance and make preemptive strikes.

A missile launch test conducted by the KPA's Tactical Nuclear Operations Unit at an undisclosed location.  (AFP).

A missile launch test conducted by the KPA’s Tactical Nuclear Operations Unit at an undisclosed location. (AFP).

Concerns about North Korea’s nuclear program have grown in recent months, after the country passed a law authorizing the preemptive use of its bombs in some cases and reportedly moved to deploy tactical nuclear weapons along its border with North Korea. South Korea.

The AP agency maintains that some experts believe that Kim Jong Un he wants to use his advanced nuclear arsenal so that the United States recognizes North Korea as a legitimate nuclear state, something that the North Korean leader considers crucial to get the suffocating United Nations sanctions on his country lifted.

Kim Jong Un He said the new launches were “a clear warning” to South Korea and the United States, informing them of North Korea’s posture of nuclear response and offensive capability. Kim also reiterated that he has no intention of resuming disarmament diplomacy with the United States, preferring instead to focus on expanding his arsenal, according to the official news agency.

North Korean missile fire.  (AFP).

North Korean missile fire. (AFP).

Source: Elcomercio

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