North Korea Goes ahead with N-Test, Defies Warnings
Defying all international warnings, North Korea has carried out an underground nuclear test, Pyongyang said. The test has raised concerns over the country’s nuclear weapon programme.
According to North Korean claim, Monday’s test was more vigorous than the country’s first test two-and-a-half years ago.
Besides, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reports that the country test-fired a short-range missile few hours after the nuclear test.
Reacting on the matter, US President Barack Obama termed reported test as a “matter of grave concern”, which warrants international action. In a statement, he said, “By acting in blatant defiance of the UN Security Council, North Korea is directly and recklessly challenging the international community.”
In the meantime, Russia’s envoy to the UN said that the Security Council would conduct a special meeting on late Monday to discuss the issue.
As per the Russia’s Defense Ministry, strength of the nuclear explosion was up to 20 kilotons, the same as the bomb dropped by the US on Nagasaki had. Seismologists from around the world reported a tremor in northeast North Korea a little before 0100 UTC, near where Pyongyang conducted its first test in October, 2006.
Immediately after the news of test broke, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak held an emergency security session. The news also shook South Korean financial markets with the main share index falling nearly four percent.
The Japanese government said that it has set up a task force at the crisis management center of Prime Minister Taro Aso’s office.
It may be mentioned that last month, North Korea threatened to restart reprocessing work at its once closed Yongbyon nuclear complex. The move was a retaliation to international criticism of its April launch of a rocket it says was fired to put a satellite into space.
The United States and other countries believe the rocket was a test launch for a ballistic missile.