Kim Jong-un called for increasing North Korean nuclear production and having weapons ready to be used “at any time and place”

Kim Jong-un visited the Pyongyang Nuclear Weapons Research Institute where he “familiarized himself” with “the technical specifications of new tactical nuclear weapons” (KRT / Reuters) (KRT /)

the north korean leader kim jong un urged increase nuclear production for military purposes already manufacture more powerful weaponsstate media reported on Tuesday.

Kim’s call coincides with the arrival of the US aircraft carrier Nimitz in South Korea on Tuesday for military exercises with Seoul forces.

In a meeting with members of the country’s nuclear weapons institute, the North Korean leader said they should prepare for use their missiles “anytime, anywhere”said the state news agency KCNA.

Kim called for “proactively expanding the production of weapons-grade nuclear materials with a view to implementing the plan to (…) exponentially increase nuclear arsenals,” he said.

The leader also “encouraged to continue producing powerful nuclear weapons” which in his opinion will cause fear in the enemies of the North, the agency added.

Photographs published by the official newspaper rodong sinmun showed Kim, surrounded by uniformed soldiers, inspecting a row of suspected nuclear warheads identified as “Hwasan-31″which means volcano in Korean.

Kim visits a room displaying what appear to be various types of warheads designed to be mounted on missiles or rocket launchers (KCNA/AP)
Kim visits a room displaying what appears to be various types of warheads designed to be installed on missiles or rocket launchers (KCNA/AP) (Uncredited/)

Such warheads of green color can be mounted on different types of missilesaccording to the tables and diagrams that can be seen on the walls.

Experts have warned that the unveiling of a potential tactical nuclear weapon shows signs of technical progress and could herald an imminent nuclear test.

Seventh nuclear test?

North Korea declared itself an “irreversible” nuclear power last year, and Kim recently called for an “exponential increase in weapons production, including tactical nuclear weapons.

North Korea’s state media released a wave of reports on nuclear issues on Tuesday, a indication that the country is preparing its seventh nuclear testaccording to analysts.

“North Korea unveiled a significantly reduced tactical nuclear warhead and many wonder if it can really explodesaid Cheong Song-chang, a researcher at the Sejong Institute. “It raised the possibility that North Korea will carry out its seventh nuclear test with these tactical nuclear warheads,” he told AFP.

Pyongyang has entered into a “give and take” of missile launches and tests in response to US and South Korean military exercises, placing a heavy burden on the impoverished country.

The unveiling of the tactical nuclear weapon coincides with the arrival in South Korea on Tuesday of a US Navy carrier strike group.

Relations between the two Koreas are at one of their lowest points in years, with joint exercises by Washington and Seoul intensifying while Pyongyan increasingly conducts weapons tests.

Kim was also informed of the progress to computerize the combined nuclear weapons management system.
Kim was also informed of the progress to computerize the combined nuclear weapons management system “Haekbangsoe” (Korean for “Nuclear Trigger”) (KRT/Reuters) (KRT/)

But North Korean responses could prove too costly for the impoverished country.

“North Korea has warned of an overwhelming response to every joint military exercise, but given the number of missiles launched, it cannot go on like this indefinitely,” Park Won-gon, a professor at Seoul’s Ewha University, told AFP.

“In that case, the seventh nuclear test will mark a kind of end, they will declare themselves nuclear power and will negotiate again with the United States”, he anticipated.

Photos from the visit show for the first time models of North Korean atomic warheads designed to be fitted into short-range projectiles.
Photos from the visit show for the first time models of North Korean atomic warheads designed to be equipped on short-range projectiles (KRT/)
Along with the heads, apparently baptized as
Along with the heads, apparently named “Hwasal-31” (“Volcano-31”), appear three of the weapons systems that the regime has repeatedly tested in recent months, and with particular insistence in recent days: Hwasal-1 and Hwasal-2 strategic cruisers and KN-23 short-range ballistic missiles (KRT/)

underwater drone

When North Korea has “flawlessly” prepared its weapons systems, “the enemy will fear us and will not dare to provoke our sovereignty, our system and our people,” Kim said, according to the KCNA.

The secretive communist country is also trying to diversify its nuclear weapons delivery systems, saying on Tuesday it had conducted a second test of what it calls an “underwater nuclear attack drone.”

The first test of this new weapon, a submarine without a crew, called Haeil (tsunami in Korean), whose capacity raises doubts among experts, was carried out last week in response to large military maneuvers organized by South Korea and the United States.

North Korea claimed that Haeil maneuvered submerged for more than 41 hours following a simulated 600km itinerary.

The test “tested all the strategic qualifications as well as the safety and reliability of the weapon system,” according to KCNA.

The North Korean military also carried out test firings simulating a nuclear attack using tactical ballistic missiles on Monday, KCNA said in a separate report.

(With information from AFP)

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