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'Seoul will be vaporised': Boris Johnson's warning as US threatens to annihilate North Korea

Sunday - 03/09/2017 22:30
oris Johnson has warned President Donald Trump (...)
GETTY IMAGES
GETTY IMAGES

Boris Johnson has warned President Donald Trump that taking military action against North Korea could provoke Kim Jong-un to “vaporise” the South Korean population in response.

Pyongyang announced on Sunday that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded onto a long-range missile, which Mr Johnson described as “a new order of threat”.

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson - Credit: Victoria Jones 
Foreign Secretary Boris JohnsonCredit: Victoria Jones 

The Foreign Secretary condemned Pyongyang’s “reckless” act, and said that “all options are on the table, but we really don’t see any easy military solution”.

President Trump led world condemnation of North Korea’s biggest ever nuclear test, describing the actions of the “rogue nation” as “very hostile and dangerous” to the US.

He added that “appeasement with North Korea will not work”, having recently promised to rain “fire and fury” on North Korea if it continued to threaten the US.

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South Korea launched a ballistic missile exercise late on Sunday in response to Pyongyang's provocative detonation, state news agency Yonhap reported. "S. Korea's military stages ballistic missile exercise in response to N. Korea's nuke test," the agency said.

The nuclear weapon test registered with international seismic monitoring agencies as a man-made earthquake of magnitude 6.3, making it 10 times more powerful that North Korea’s last nuclear test a year ago.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un provides guidance on a nuclear weapons program - Credit: KCNA 
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un provides guidance on a nuclear weapons program Credit: KCNA 

Hours before the explosion, the North Korean state news agency had released pictures of Kim inspecting a silver-coloured, hourglass-shaped warhead, which was markedly different from a ball-shaped device detonated last year.

Experts said it indicated a two-stage thermonuclear device, suggesting Pyongyang has made significant progress towards its goal of a long-range nuclear missile.

The UN Security Council will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to discuss the latest development and possible responses.

Mr Johnson said: “It’s certainly our view that none of the military options are good...the distance between North Korea and Seoul is very, very small and they could basically vaporise large parts of the South Korean population even with conventional weapons, so that’s not really very easy to threaten or to deliver.”

North Koreans watch a news report showing North Korea's nuclear test on electronic screen in Pyongyang  - Credit: KYODO
North Koreans watch a news report showing North Korea's nuclear test on electronic screen in Pyongyang Credit: KYODO

Calling on China to take stronger action against its client state, he went on: “We have to consider how to respond and it’s our view in the UK, overwhelmingly that peaceful, diplomatic means are the best and we think the sanctions route still holds potential.

“China is responsible for 90 per cent of North Korea’s trade and North Korea only has six months of oil supplies left. There is scope to continue to put pressure on the regime."

Theresa May, meanwhile, called on the United Nations “urgently” to look at fresh sanctions.

The hydrogen bomb test, the sixth to be carried out by Kim and the first since Mr Trump became president, follows a series of long-range missile tests that pose an increasing threat to the US, and comes just days after a missile was launched that flew over Japan.

Mr Johnson said: “They seem to be moving closer towards a hydrogen bomb which, if fitted to a successful missile, would unquestionably present a new order of threat.”

President Vladimir Putin of Russia and President Xi Jinping of China met at a pre-planned summit in Xian, where they agreed to adhere to "the goal of denuclearisation on the Korean Peninsula”.

Nuclear North Korea

Source: The Telegraph:

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