Bluff, or further sign of the imminence of a nuclear missile test? The North Korean leader Kim Jong Un promised to react “resolutely” and to resort to atomic bomb in the event of a nuclear attack on his country, the North Korean agency KCNA reported on Saturday the next day. of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch by Pyongyang. North Korea “will resolutely respond to nuclear weapons with nuclear weapons and to all-out confrontation with all-out confrontation,” the North Korean leader said as quoted by KCNA, according to which he himself supervised the firing of Friday missile.
KCNA said Friday’s test was for North Korea’s ‘new type of ICBM’, the Hwasong-17, and the ‘test firing clearly proved the reliability of this major new strategic weapon system’. . The North Korean national news agency said the missile had reached “a maximum altitude of 6,040.9 km and traveled a distance of 999.2 km” before “accurately landing on the predefined area” in the Sea of the East, or Sea of Japan. The distance and altitude correspond to the estimates given by Seoul and by Tokyo Friday, and are only slightly lower than those of the ICBM fired by Pyongyang on March 24, which appears to be the strongest test ever by the North.
US B-1B bomber redeployed
The United States, the South Korea and Japan have stepped up joint military maneuvers in recent months since Kim Jong-un declared in September that North Korea’s nuclear state status was “irreversible”. Seoul and Washington notably conducted the largest joint air exercises in their history in late October and early November. An American B-1B strategic bomber was redeployed to the Korean peninsula on Saturday as part of a joint air exercise between Seoul and Washington
But the North Korea sees these demonstrations of force as general rehearsals for an invasion of its territory or an attempt to overthrow the regime. And is all the more sensitive to these major air exercises as its air force is precisely its Achilles’ heel.
KCNA also reported that Kim Jong-un attended the launch “with his beloved daughter and wife”. State media showed a beaming Kim walking past a giant missile, accompanied by a little girl in a puffer jacket and red shoes. It is extremely rare for state media to mention the North Korean leader’s children, and this would be one of the first official confirmations of his daughter’s existence, experts say.