North Korea leader says he will com­plete nu­clear pro­gram

The Free Press Journal - - WORLD -

North Korea leader Kim Jong Un said the coun­try is near­ing its goal of "equi­lib­rium" in mil­i­tary force with the United States, as the United Na­tions Se­cu­rity Coun­cil strongly con­demned the North's "highly provoca­tive" bal­lis­tic mis­sile test. The North's of­fi­cial Korean Cen­tral News Agency car­ried Kim's com­ments on Saturday, a day af­ter US and South Korean mil­i­taries de­tected the mis­sile launch from the North Korean cap­i­tal of Py­ongyang. It trav­elled 3,700 kilo­me­tres as it flew over Ja­pan be­fore land­ing in the northern Pa­cific Ocean. It was the coun­try's longestever test flight of a bal­lis­tic mis­sile.

The North has con­firmed the mis­sile as an in­ter­me­di­ate range Hwa­song-12, the same model launched over Ja­pan on Au­gust 29, re­ports AP.

The KCNA said Kim ex­pressed great sat­is­fac­tion over the launch, which he said ver­i­fied the "com­bat ef­fi­ciency and re­li­a­bil­ity" of the mis­sile and the suc­cess of ef­forts to in­crease its power. While the English ver­sion of the re­port was less straight­for­ward, the Korean ver­sion quoted Kim as declar­ing the mis­sile as op­er­a­tionally ready. He vowed to com­plete his nu­clear weapons pro­gram in the face of strength­en­ing in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions, the agency said.

The UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil ac­cused North Korea of un­der­min­ing re­gional peace and se­cu­rity by launch­ing its lat­est mis­sile over Ja­pan and said its nu­clear and mis­sile tests "have caused grave se­cu­rity con­cerns around the world" and threaten all 193 UN mem­ber states.

The pic­ture shows shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (C) in­spect­ing a launch­ing drill of the medium-and-long range strate­gic bal­lis­tic rocket Hwa­song12 at an undis­closed lo­ca­tion on Saturday. AFP

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