North Korea Nuclear Threat "Needlessly Provocative" Says White House
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North Korea's nuclear threats are considered to be excessive and more bark than bite. After sending a satellite into orbit in December, North Korea threatened a third nuclear test last Thursday. As for the when and where, no one outside of North Korea knows.
North Korea maintains the satellite they launched last month was for scientific research. The U.S. believes it was a step towards developing long-range missiles that could reach North Korea's self-proclaimed "sworn enemy," America.
White House spokesman Jay Carney told CNN the nuclear test threat is, "needlessly provocative," and "would be a significant violation of United National Security Council resolutions." (Al Jazeera)
The Thursday threat came after the UN Security Council voted to add names and entities to a blacklist that effectively prohibits anyone inside the U.S to aid North Korea, isolating them from the Council, including their only major ally, China, who eventually supported the blacklist.
Hong-Kong based Leader International Trading Ltd. was blacklisted for helping the North Koreans acquire the arms resources for nuclear weapons. Tanchon Commercial Bank wound up on the list for allegedly aiding Iran's missile supply. (Al Jazeera)
Though the White House maintains the threat has been blown out of proportion, nuclear expert and Arms Control Wonk blogger, Jeffrey Lewis, heeds caution.
"There has been a tendency to underestimate what North Korea can do in the space and missile field, and possibly with technology in general." (Fox News)
Korea's only friend and major ally China attempts to mediate between a temperamental Asian neighbor and multi-decade long Western economic rival.
In Beijing, foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told Beijing told reporters, "All relevant parties should refrain from action that might escalate the situation in the region." (Al Jazeera)
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