North Korea

N Korea slams G7, signals nuclear program to continue


The group ‘exacerbated the current international crisis,’ says the North’s foreign ministry official.

N Korea slams G7, signals nuclear program to continue

A member of staff arranges national flags prior to a group photo session during the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting at the Iikura Guest House Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2023, in Tokyo, Japan.

North Korea lambasted the G7 for denouncing its nuclear weapons development, in a sign that demonstrates not only its intent to persist with the nuke program, but also preparation for impending military provocations.

“The G7, a relic of the Cold War, should be immediately disbanded as the first step towards resolving current international crises and restoring world peace,” Jo Chol Su, director-general of the Department of International Organizations at the North Korea’s Foreign Ministry, said via the official Korean Central News Agency Tuesday.

Jo called the G7 a mere “interest group of a few countries” that “exacerbated the current international crisis, speaks nonsense towards sovereign nations, which is a mockery and insult to the international community striving for fairness and equity.”

The emotionally-charged statement came as the G7 foreign ministers strongly condemned Pyongyang’s illegal nuclear program in a joint statement last week. The ministers, gathered in Tokyo, also denounced North Korea’s ammunition supply to Russia, stating that it clearly violates United Nations Security Council resolutions.

South Korea’s National Intelligence Service told its lawmakers in the National Assembly earlier this month that Russia has acquired over 1 million artillery shells from North Korea since August.

The development demonstrates the strengthening relationship between Pyongyang and Moscow, underscored by the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Russia September.

The G7’s joint statement was “unfounded and unfair criticism” Jo said, hinting that Pyongyang will continue to advance its nuclear program. The Foreign Ministry official also berated the United States for “pushing the situation towards nuclear war brink by implementing various nuclear confrontation policies in the Korean Peninsula.”

North Korea perceives the strategic assets of the U.S. as a direct threat to its regime’s security. The defense ministers of the U.S. and South Korea agreed on Monday to enhance their alliance’s operational capabilities, including the use of strategic assets, to maintain regional peace – a move likely to prompt objections from Pyongyang.

Following the ministers’ pledge for enhanced operational capability, the U.S. and South Korean navies are carrying out a four-day joint exercise off the eastern coast of the peninsula, the South Korean navy said on Tuesday. The joint drill, which started from Monday, aims to establish military readiness against maritime provocations, and to improve joint operation capabilities as well as mutual interoperability. 

Pyongyang’s latest decry could serve as a pretext for the expected and upcoming military provocation, in the form of what it claims to be a ‘satellite’ launch in the near future. Historically, North Korea has often built up pretexts for its major military actions, portraying them as defensive responses to the West’s ‘hostility.’

Such a launch would contravene U.N. Security Council resolutions prohibiting North Korea from using ballistic missile technology for any launches. North Korea’s past satellite launches have contributed to advancements in its long-range missile capabilities.

Recent tests of North Korean long-range missiles have shown the theoretical capacity to reach the U.S. mainland.

Edited by Elaine Chan and Taejun Kang.

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