Kim Jong Un promises more nuclear bombs amid world backlash

SEOUL, South Korea -- North Korean leader Kim Jong Un looked Monday to milk his country's recent nuclear test as a propaganda victory, praising his scientists and vowing more nuclear bombs a day after the U.S.

See Full Article

flew a powerful nuclear-capable warplane close to the North in a show of force.

A standoff between the rival Koreas has deepened since last week's test, the North's fourth. Seoul on Monday continued anti-Pyongyang propaganda broadcasts across the border and announced that it will further limit the entry of South Koreans to a jointly run factory park in North Korea.

Outside North Korea, Kim faces widespread condemnation and threats of heavy sanctions over the North's disputed claim of a hydrogen bomb test. Internally, however, Kim's massive propaganda apparatus has looked to link the test to Kim's leadership so as to glorify him and portray the test as necessary to combat a U.S.-led attempt to topple the North's authoritarian system.

On Monday, Kim took photos with nuclear scientists and technicians involved in the test and praised them for "having glorified" his two predecessors, his late father, Kim Jong Il, and his grandfather, state founder Kim Il Sung, according to the state-run Korean Central news Agency.

Kim earlier called the explosion "a self-defensive step" meant to protect the region "from the danger of nuclear war caused by the U.S.-led imperialists," a separate KCNA dispatch said.

The comments provide insight into North Korea's long-running argument that it is the presence of tens of thousands of U.S. troops in South Korea and Japan and a "hostile" U.S. policy that justify its pursuit of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles.

On Sunday, a U.S. B-52 bomber flew low over areas near Seoul, the South Korean capital city only about an hour's drive from the border with the North, a fly-over that North Korea will see as a threat. The B-52 was joined by South Korean F-15 and U.S. F-16 fighters and returned to its base in Guam after the flight, the U.S. military said.

White House chief of staff Denis McDonough said the B-52 flight was intended to underscore to South Korean allies "the deep and enduring alliance that we have with them." Interviewed on CNN, McDonough said the United States would work with South Korea, Japan, China and Russia "to deeply isolate the North Koreans" and "squeeze" them until they live up to prior commitments to get rid of their nuclear weapons.

World powers are looking for ways to punish the North over its disputed bomb test, which, even if not of a hydrogen bomb, still likely pushes Pyongyang closer to its goal of a nuclear-armed missile that can reach the U.S. mainland. Many outside governments and experts question whether the blast was in fact a powerful hydrogen test.

In the wake of the test on Wednesday, the two Koreas have settled into the kind of Cold War-era standoff that has defined their relationship over the past seven decades. Since Friday, South Korea has been blasting anti-Pyongyang propaganda from huge speakers along the border, and the North is using speakers of its own to send messages, although Seoul says they are too weak to be heard clearly on the South Korean side.

A top North Korean ruling party official's warning that the South's broadcasts have pushed the Korean Peninsula "toward the brink of war" is typical of Pyongyang's over-the-top rhetoric. But it is also indicative of the real fury that the broadcasts, which criticize the country's revered dictatorship, cause in the North.

North Korea considers the South Korean broadcasts tantamount to an act of war. When Seoul Korea briefly resumed propaganda broadcasts in August after an 11-year break, Seoul says the two Koreas exchanged artillery fire.

While the South's broadcasts also include news and pop music, much of the programming challenges North Korea's government more directly.

The South Korean measures Monday on the jointly run factory park in the North will take effect Tuesday. They seek to limit the daily number of South Korean nationals at the complex to about 650, from the current 800, according to Seoul's Unification Ministry.

The park, the last major remaining symbol of inter-Korean cooperation, is considered a rare legitimate source of hard currency for the impoverished North.

Last week, South Korea began barring those with no direct relations to the park's operations, such as clients and potential buyers.

Responding to the North's bomb test, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has urged China, the North's only major ally and biggest aid provider, to end "business as usual" with North Korea.

Diplomats at a UN Security Council emergency session pledged to swiftly pursue new sanctions. For current sanctions and any new penalties to work, better cooperation and stronger implementation from China is seen as key.

It may take weeks or longer to confirm or refute the North's claim that it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, which would mark a major and unanticipated advance for its still-limited nuclear arsenal.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Kittens rescued from abuse in Prince Albert, Sask., die

    Canada News CBC News
    Five kittens rescued from abuse and attempts to light them on fire last month in Prince Albert, Sask., have died. "It's a very sad ending," said Liana Maloney, manager of the Prince Albert Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Source
  • Bono, the Edge donating time for Canada Day concert, government says

    Canada News CBC News
    U2 members Bono and the Edge are donating their time as a "birthday present to Canada" and will not be paid a performance fee for appearing at Canada 150 celebrations on Parliament Hill July 1, a spokesperson from Canadian Heritage says. Source
  • Sept. 11 worker facing deportation is freed from detention

    World News CTV News
    NEW YORK -- A onetime Sept. 11 World Trade Center cleanup volunteer who faces possible deportation over a 1990 drug conviction but was pardoned by the governor was freed from immigration detention on Wednesday. Carlos Cardona was released from custody and will be required to check in periodically pending the outcome of his immigration case, a spokeswoman for U.S. Source
  • Several injured, horse euthanized in stage coach crash near Williams Lake, B.C.

    Canada News CTV News
    WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. - RCMP say several people were injured and a horse had to be euthanized when a stage coach plunged about 12 meters down a ravine near Williams Lake, B.C. The horse-pulled coach belonged to a local First Nation that was taking part in an annual ride that marks the start of the Williams Lake Stampede, which begins Thursday. Source
  • B.C. man accused of wanting to 'destroy' ex-wife found guilty in online harassment

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- A man accused of trying to emotionally ruin the life of his ex-wife using online posts was found guilty Wednesday of criminal harassment by a B.C. Supreme Court jury. The court heard Patrick Fox's tactics included threatening emails, blog postings and a website about Desiree Capuano, who lives in Arizona. Source
  • Quebec premier defends remarks about Muslims in wake of Flint attack

    Canada News CTV News
    Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard insists there is nothing shocking about his recent comments about Muslims having a responsibility in the fight against terrorism. Following the arrest of a Muslim Montrealer in the stabbing of a police officer at the Flint airport in Michigan last week, Couillard said terrorist events like it can't be disconnected "from Islam in general. Source
  • North Korea warns U.S. it will keep building nuclear arsenal

    World News CTV News
    North Korea's UN ambassador is warning the United States and the rest of the world that his country will keep building up its nuclear arsenal regardless of sanctions, pressure or military attack. Kim In Ryong told the Security Council on Wednesday that the "hostile policy" of the United States and its military manoeuvrs with South Korea in April and May are responsible for bringing the situation on the Korean Peninsula closer to the brink of nuclear war than ever before. Source
  • Hot weather, dead trees and too much rain add up to dangerous fire season in California

    World News CBC News
    No one joins the California Conservation Corps. to cut down trees. But where visitors to Sequoia National Park see grey trunks and leafless branches, forestry worker Jose Castaneda sees kindling. "It feels really sad to see so many dead trees," he says. Source
  • Record-breaking Canadian sniper saved Iraqi lives according to special forces general

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    OTTAWA — The sniper who shattered the record for the longest confirmed kill also saved lives, the deputy commander of Canadian special forces said. Brig.-Gen. Peter Dawe told The Canadian Press on Wednesday that fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant were gathering for an attack on an unsuspecting Iraqi military unit when the Canadian commando fired the 3.5-kilometre shot. Source
  • NAFTA lawsuits target Canada most, U.S. hasn't lost yet

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA - When it comes to the North American Free Trade Agreement, Canada can safely claim the title of biggest loser in terms of lawsuits. Since the agreement came into force in 1994, Canada has been sued 39 times by foreign companies claiming Canadian policies have violated their rights under NAFTA. Source