North Korea is freezing its nuclear and missile testing program, scheduled for this weekend as part of the negotiations with South Korean and American Presidents, Moon Jae In and Donald Trump. However, this does not signify the end of the North Korea-based nuclear missiles, and according to the director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program, Jeffrey Lewis, the regime may resume testing at any time.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said on Saturday to the Korean Central news agency: “under the proven condition of complete nuclear weapons, we no longer need any nuclear tests, mid-range and intercontinental ballistic rocket tests, and that the nuclear test site in the northern area has also completed its mission”.
A message from Kim Jong Un: “North Korea will stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles.”
Also will “Shut down a nuclear test site in the country’s Northern Side to prove the vow to suspend nuclear tests.” Progress being made for all!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 21, 2018
Why is North Korea seemingly giving up on nuclear weapons?
This ceasing of missile testing is barely a token of trust in advance of summits with South Korea. Yet, the plans do include the shutdown of nuclear test sites, but it doesn’t mean that North Korea will comply with the agreements since the sites will remain, as well as the already developed nuclear missiles.
There has been much speculation on the meaning of the freezing development on high tech weapons from North Korea, as this nuclear program has been halted before in 1996 and 2006. Some specialists remain skeptical towards the news, and Lewis stated that because of political repercussions North Korea would not test, so they went on to announce it and got credit, but as said: “they’re not gonna give anything up”.
According to CNN, this is a huge win for President Trump as supposedly North Korea no longer represents a threat to international security. Many others, though, choose to remain skeptical since the main argument for North Korea to stop missile testing is that tests are completed, and the story of nuclear disarmament with North Korea has been paved by failed attempts.
President Trump tweeted regarding the suspension of tests “North Korea has agreed to suspend all Nuclear Tests and close up a major test site. This is very good news for North Korea and the World – big progress! Look forward to our Summit”.
VIDEO: North Korea's announcement that it will halt nuclear tests and intercontinental missile launches has left experts puzzling over Kim Jong Un's true intentions — and the extent to which Donald Trump deserves credit pic.twitter.com/q8zhD0nmyW
— AFP news agency (@AFP) April 22, 2018
About North Korea’s nuclear program
North Korea testing weapons of mass destruction is a series of events that dates back to when the country fired the Nodong-1 missile into the Sea of Japan (East Sea of Korea), but last year Kim Jong Un ordered the testing and detonation of a thermonuclear weapon, in this case, a hydrogen bomb with the strength of 50 kilotons.
According to both the United States Geological Survey and the China Earthquake Network Center, this triggered an artificial earthquake of a 6.3 magnitude followed by a smaller earthquake not far from the Korean Punggye-Ri nuclear test site.
However, Kim Jong Un said that this bomb could effectively be loaded onto an Intercontinental ballistic missile, sparking international outrage and setting off a series of suggested sanctions by several nations such as Canada and China among others, followed by an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council.