Kim Jong Un Outlines Plans For Nuclear War At
At a rare political event in Pyongyang, North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un told party members that the country would not carry out a nuclear strike unless its sovereignty is violated.
This comes after the country has carried out a series of provocative weapons tests. During his remarks at the Workers Party Conference, Kim vowed to push forward with nuclear development despite international pressure.
NPR's Elise Hu tells out Newscast unit that this is "the highest level political convening in North Korea and the first of its kind since 1980." Here's more from Elise:
"In lengthy remarks, Kim said 'American imperialists' pose a threat and as long as that threat continues, so will the North Korean nuclear program. Kim did say that his country would not use nuclear weapons unless its sovereignty was infringed on. South Korea issued a response, saying the international community does not acknowledge the North as a nuclear nation. And that it will not tolerate North Korea's refusal to give up its nuclear weapons."
According to The New York Times, Kim also said: "We will comply sincerely with our international commitment to nuclear nonproliferation and strive to achieve the denuclearization of the world."
In January, North Korea launched its fourth nuclear weapons test. The U.N. applied new sanctions to the isolated nation in March to try to discourage the country from launching further weapons tests — but they have since continued.
In fact, Kim's remarks about deterrence come even as "movement observed at the country's nuclear site is consisted with preparations for another nuclear test," the BBC reported.
BBC correspondent Stephen Evens explains that major questions surround Kim's pronouncement that the country would not strike unless its sovereignty is violated:
"How, his opponents might ask, does he define the 'encroachment of sovereignty'? Is he saying that a nuclear North Korea would only strike if attacked or might it be something less than that? It is not clear."
Elise has reported that this gathering, which started Friday, is being closely observed "for signs of where he plans to take the reclusive country."