US President-elect Donald Trump says North Korea will not be able to build a nuclear missile that can reach the United States.
"North Korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching parts of the US," Trump tweeted on Monday evening. "It won't happen!"
The business mogul’s comments came a day after North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un announced that Pyongyang is close to finalizing the development of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
Kim called on Washington to make a "resolute decision to withdraw its anachronistic hostile North Korea policy."
He said that Pyongyang had "soared as a nuclear power," and that it is a "military power of the east that cannot be touched by even the strongest enemy."
The United States has never accepted the country as a nuclear state andTrump has not clearly stated his policy on the country yet.
This is not the first time Trump made such a promise. During his campaign, he took to Twitter to criticize US foreign policy and issue statements mostly about the most serious national security issues.
Recently, he tweeted that the US should "greatly strengthen and expand" its nuclear capabilities.
Trump has also accused China of military expansionism and currency manipulation through his tweeted messages.
However, analysts believe that he will need Beijing to be able to deal with North Korea's mounting confrontation.
On Monday, he also said that "China has been taking out massive amounts of money & wealth from the US in totally one-sided trade, but won't help with North Korea.”
There is still the question of how close Pyongyang is to realizing its full nuclear ambitions, as it has never successfully test-fired an ICBM. In 2016, the Asian recluse country carried out two nuclear tests and numerous missile launches.
North Korea has faced international pressure to quit its arms development and nuclear program but has nevertheless reported steady growth in those areas in the past years.