TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - Japanese Defense Ministry Itsunori Onodera claims that North Korea's latest nuclear test has proved that its technologies have advanced and that Pyongyang now has enough capability to be considered as one of the world's nuclear states.
North Korea's latest nuclear test has proved that its technologies have advanced and that Pyongyang now has enough capability to be considered as one of the world's nuclear states, Japanese Defense Ministry Itsunori Onodera said Sunday.
"There is a possibility that it has been a test of hydrogen bomb of estimated 160 kilotons of TNT, and their technologies are in fact advancing. It is a big threat, and North Korea has ability to be considered as a nuclear state," Onodera said in an interview to the NHK broadcaster.
The minister also noted that Pyongyang's next step might be a test of intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
"Yet another ability that North Korea wants to posses is the ICBM. Considering that their final objective is to target the US territory with missile warheads loaded with nuclear bombs, most likely the next step would me the ICBM test. If tested, a missile would fly through skies of Japan, and we are monitoring the situation 24 hours a day, seven days a week," Onodera said.
On September 3, North Korea announced it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded onto an ICBM, triggering worldwide condemnation. Several days before the test, Pyongyang launched a missile over Japan.
The numerous missile launches and nuclear tests Pyongyang has conducted over the last several months, all in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions, have only made the situation on the Korean Peninsula more precarious. In August, North Korea said that it might consider carrying out a strike near the US territory of Guam.