North Korea is slamming the latest sanctions threatened by U.S. President Barack Obama after its fifth nuclear test, calling any sanctions “laughable.”
On Sunday, North Korean officials said the isolated regime will continue to strengthen its nuclear power despite any sanctions.
The threat of sanctions came in the wake of North Korea’s latest nuclear test on Friday after it set off its most powerful nuclear explosion to date, and announcing that they now have the ability to mount a warhead on a ballistic missile.
According to Reuters, a U.S. special envoy met with Japanese officials on Sunday to discuss possible sanctions. They later concurred Obama’s statement by announcing that the United States may launch unilateral sanctions against North Korea.
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The state-run news agency, KCNA, said a North Korean foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement Sunday that Obama’s threats meant nothing.
“The group of Obama’s running around and talking about meaningless sanctions until today is highly laughable, when their ‘strategic patience’ policy is completely worn out and they are close to packing up to move out.”
The agency went on to report that nothing will stop the regime from increasing its nuclear capabilities.
“As we’ve made clear, measures to strengthen the national nuclear power in quality and quantity will continue to protect our dignity and right to live from augmented threats of nuclear war from the United States.”
In a separate KCNA report on Sunday, Jong Won Sop, a teacher at the University of National Economy, was cited as saying North Koreans were “delighted” by the nuclear test.
“The enemies can no longer deny the strategic position of our country as a nuclear weapons state.”
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According to The Guardian, the spokesman for North Korea said the regime is demanding that the world recognize that the regime is a legitimate nuclear state.
“Obama is trying hard to deny the DPRK’s [North Korea’s] strategic position as a legitimate nuclear weapons state but it is as foolish an act as trying to eclipse the sun with a palm.”
Friday’s nuclear test was denounced by the U.N. Security Council and officials said it would begin work immediately on a resolution, but according to The Wall Street Journal, it could take months. The United States, the United Kingdom and France are reportedly leading the push for new sanctions.
The U.N. said North Korea demonstrated a “clear violation” as well as a “flagrant disregard of existing council resolutions.”
According to the BBC, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on the members to remain united in thwarting North Korea’s nuclear expansion.
“I count on the security council to remain united and take appropriate action. We must urgently break this accelerating spiral of escalation.”
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The U.S. special representative for North Korea policy, Sung Kim, said on Sunday that they would be “working very closely in the Security Council and beyond to come up with the strongest possible measure against North Korea’s latest actions.”
“In addition to action in the Security Council, both the U.S. and Japan, together with the Republic of Korea, will be looking at unilateral measures, as well as bilateral measures, as well as possible trilateral cooperation.”
South Korea noted on Saturday that the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un would not back down and that their nuclear expansion was moving quickly.
[Photo by Wong Maye-E/AP Photo, File]