(CNN) — South Korea’s National Security Minister Lee Jong-sup said on Thursday that “any nuclear attack” by North Korea would “lead to the end” of Kim Jong Un’s regime “because of North Korea’s overwhelming and decisive response”.
At a joint news conference with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon, Lee also said the United States has pledged to increase “the frequency and intensity of the use of strategic assets” in response to any provocation by North Korea. It would increase “US strategic assets to the equivalent of a permanent deployment.”
In addition, Lee said North Korea is “ready to conduct” a nuclear test, but “when they will conduct it” remains a mystery.
“North Korea needs to think about its political intentions, and it is difficult for us to estimate exactly when a nuclear test will happen,” he added.
North Korea launched three short-range missiles
On Thursday night, meanwhile, North Korea fired three short-range ballistic missiles, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said.
The missiles were fired from the Goksan region of North Hwange province between 9:35 and 9:49 pm local time on Thursday.
“Our military has strengthened surveillance and control, and maintains a fully prepared posture while cooperating closely with the United States,” the JCS said.
The Security Council will meet on Friday to discuss North Korea’s missile launches.
The United Nations (UN) Security Council will meet this Friday to discuss North Korea’s latest missile launches, US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield announced on Thursday.
A spokeswoman for the US embassy in the UN said the US, UK, France, Albania, Ireland and Norway had invited the open meeting.
In an interview with MSNBC, Thomas-Greenfield condemned North Korea’s actions, noting that they had “launched more than 50 missiles in 2022 alone and violated multiple Security Council resolutions.” Attempts to contain Pyongyang.
“These are the resolutions…we, the Chinese and others, will publish books against the DPRK,” he said, using an acronym for North Korea’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
“But recently, China hasn’t voted with us to condemn these actions, or cooperated with adding new sanctions. We really need to step up our efforts to get the message across to the DPRK that what they’re doing is unacceptable,” Thomas-Greenfield said.
“We will bring the Security Council meeting tomorrow before the full council,” he said, adding that the US was “working closely” with the Japanese and South Koreans to “make sure that the DPRK does not think. Something acceptable”.
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