N. Korea vows to complete nuke programme

SEOULNorth Korea said it will complete its nuclear programme in the face of heightened United Nations (UN) sanctions after the isolated nation last Friday red a second intermediate-range ballistic missile that flew over Japan.

Leader Kim Jong Un claimed his nuclear programme is nearly complete despite a series of sanctions by the UN Security Council and his final goal is to build “the equilibrium of real force” with the US and prevent military action against Pyongyang, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said on Saturday. Kim personally guided the launch of the latest Hwasong-12 missile, it said.

The test was aimed at “calming down the belligerence of the US” and “confirming action procedures of actual war,” the state-run agency said in a statement. The test was North Korea’s second missile over Japan in as many months. The missile flew over Hokkaido and successfully hit its target in the Pacific Ocean, KCNA said. The rogue state conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on Sept 3. It has launched more than a dozen missiles this year as Kim’s regime seeks the capability to hit the continental US with an atomic weapon. President Donald Trump has said all options — including military — are on the table to stop North Korea from threatening the US.

Earlier in the week, the Security Council tightened sanctions after the US dropped key demands such as an oil embargo to win support from Russia and China. — Bloomberg