According to state media KCNA on Friday (Apr 21), North Korea’s Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui stated that the country will continue to build its forces and maintain its status as a nuclear weapons state until the United States and its allies remove military threats.
Choe’s comments were made in response to the Group of Seven (G7) countries’ condemnation of North Korea’s recent solid-fuel intercontinental ballistic missile test and call for denuclearisation at their meeting in Japan on Tuesday.
As tensions rise and North Korea increases its military activities, the country has threatened to take “more practical and offensive” action, denouncing the US and South Korean forces’ annual springtime military exercises as a rehearsal for “an all-out, nuclear war”.
Despite Western denials, Choe maintains that North Korea’s nuclear power status is final and irreversible, and will remain an “undeniable reality”.
Pyongyang’s development of nuclear weapons was only intended to guard against US threats, she said, urging Washington to drop its “hostile policy” against the North to ensure its own security.
“It is anachronistic to think that the right to and capability for a nuclear strike is exclusive to Washington,” KCNA quoted her as saying. “We will never seek any recognition or approval from anyone, as we are satisfied with our access to the strength for a tit-for-tat strike against the US nuclear threat.”
Choe accused the G7 countries of illegally interfering in North Korea’s internal affairs by demanding denuclearisation, saying Pyongyang will take strong action if they attempt to violate its sovereignty and fundamental interests.
“We will continue to take active measures based on all legal rights granted to a sovereign state until the military threat posed by the US and its allied forces hostile toward us is completely removed,” Choe said.
Seoul’s unification ministry handling inter-Korean affairs denounced the North’s statement as “far-fetched”, urging it to stop making threats and developing unlawful weapons programs.
“North Korea will never get what it wants through nuclear and missile development, and it will only become more isolated from the international community,” ministry deputy spokesperson Lee Hyo-jung told a briefing.