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North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

North Korea is now declared a nuclear weapons state

The secretary-general of the United Nations says he is:

“deeply concerned” by North Korea officially enshrining the right to use preemptive nuclear strikes to protect itself.

General António Guterres

The United Nations Stand

The new rule, according to Kim Jong Un, makes North Korea’s nuclear status “irreversible” and prohibits denuclearization negotiations, state media said on Friday.

The UN secretary general, Antonio Guterres, expressed alarm about the bill and renewed efforts for Pyongyang to resume denuclearization negotiations. The nuclear and missile programs of North Korea are subject to long-standing UN sanctions.

The United States Stand

The United States reiterated its stance that it had no hostile intentions toward North Korea and was ready to restart negotiations without restrictions.

After historic summits with then-US president Donald Trump and other world leaders in 2018 failed to convince Kim to give up his weapons program, observers say North Korea appears to be prepared to resume nuclear testing for the first time since 2017.

According to the nation’s official news agency, KCNA, the legislation was approved by North Korea’s rubber-stamp parliament, the Supreme People’s Assembly, on Thursday to update a law from 2013 that initially described the nation’s nuclear status.

It paraphrased Kim as saying addressing the assembly, “The highest significance of establishing nuclear weapons policy is to draw an irretrievable line so that there can be no bargaining over our nuclear weapons.” He continued by saying that he would never give up the weapons, even if the nation was subject to 100 years of sanctions.

Among the scenarios that could trigger a nuclear attack would be the threat of an imminent nuclear strike; if the country’s leadership, people or existence were under threat; or to gain the upper hand during a war.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre repeated past US statements that Washington has no hostile intent toward North Korea.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un
There won’t be any haggling about North Korea’s nuclear arsenal, according to Kim Jong-un, the country’s leader.

North Korea Stand

“As we have said, and North Korean officials, including Kim Jong Un, have publicly noted, we continue to seek diplomacy and are prepared to meet without preconditions. The DPRK continues to not respond,” she said, using the initials of North Korea’s official name.

“The United States remains focused on continuing to coordinate closely with our allies and partners to address the threats posed by DPRK,” she added.

A deputy at the North Korean assembly said the law would be a powerful legal guarantee for consolidating North Korea’s position as a nuclear weapons state and ensuring the “transparent, consistent and standard character” of its nuclear policy, KCNA reported.

Rob York, director for regional affairs at the Hawaii-based Pacific Forum, said spelling out the conditions for use of nuclear weapons was rare and showed how essential North Korea considered them to its survival.

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