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    (CNN)If North Korea was looking for another excuse to forge ahead with its nuclear weapons program, it just found one in Russia's invasion of Ukraine.That one of the very few countries to have voluntarily given up a nuclear arsenal is now under attack from the same country it gave its warheads to will not be lost on Pyongyang.In fact, analysts say, Moscow's actions have gifted the reclusive Asian nation a "perfect storm" of conditions under which to ramp its program up.Not only will North Korea use Ukraine's plight to bolster its narrative that it needs nukes to guarantee its survival, but leader Kim Jong Un may find that, with all eyes on the war in Europe, he can get away with more than ever.Divided over Ukraine, the international community will likely have little appetite for sanctions on the hermit kingdom; indeed, even unified condemnation of a recent North Korean ICBM test remains elusive. What's more, the boycott of Russian oil and gas could even open the door to cut-price energy deals between Pyongyang and Moscow -- ideological allies whose friendship...
    Seoul, South Korea (CNN)Since the turn of the year, North Korea has ramped up missile tests in defiance of international law at a frenetic pace that many who keep a close eye on the rogue state expect to continue.According to analysts, seven North Korean missile tests in the first four weeks of 2022 suggest the country's leader, Kim Jong Un, is both striving to meet domestic goals and show an increasingly turbulent world that Pyongyang remains a player in the struggle for power and influence. "By threatening to destabilize Asia while global resources are stretched thin elsewhere, Pyongyang is demanding the world pay it to act like a 'responsible nuclear power,'" said Leif-Eric Easley, associate professor of international studies at Ewha Womans University in Seoul, South Korea.Those seven missile tests have run the gamut, from what is believed to be a hypersonic glide vehicle -- potentially one of the most powerful weapons on the planet -- to an intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM), Pyongyang's longest range missile tested since 2017 -- to cruise missiles, arms that powers like the US...
    By Gawon Bae and Emiko Jozuka | CNN North Korea has fired an unidentified projectile into waters off the east coast of the Korean Peninsula, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said Wednesday. According to the Japanese government, the projectile may have been a “ballistic missile,” it said in a tweet. The Japan Coast Guard said the possible ballistic missile had already fallen into the sea by 8:23 a.m. local time. It called on all vessels transiting to look out for updates. Japan’s government also said it is confirming the safety of aircraft and ships. It marks the first projectile launch since Pyongyang said it successfully test-fired a new submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) in October last year. The submarine missile test came after weeks of seesawing tensions on the Korean Peninsula, which saw growing cooperation between Pyongyang and Seoul at the same time as rising military brinksmanship. Last year, the country also sped up its weapons testing program, including the launch in late September of what it claimed was a new hypersonic missile. Pyongyang is barred from testing ballistic missiles...
    A North Korean government mouthpiece has claimed Kim Jong-il created burritos in 2011. The Rodong Sinmun newspaper said the father of current leader Kim Jong-un invented the 'wheat wrap' and claimed their sales are booming despite a food shortage. The street food also made an appearance in a recent propaganda broadcast, saying Kim Jong-un has a 'meticulous interest' in the Mexican dish.  A North Korean government mouthpiece has claimed Kim Jong-il created burritos in 2011 and their sales are now booming. Pictured: a woman buying the 'wheat wraps' in Pyongyang In newsreel footage, North Koreans can be seen devouring the burritos at a stand outside the Kumsong Food Factory in Pyongyang.  The broadcast also showed a mural of Kim Jong-il grinning in a kitchen where burritos were being prepared.  RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next China says US and Russia must reduce nuclear weapon... China seals off thousands of Winter Olympic staff and... Share this article Share But North Koreans who have escaped the secretive state insist such dishes are virtually non-existent there....
    Seoul, South Korea (CNN)North Korea fired at least one ballistic missile from its eastern coast on Tuesday morning, according to South Korean and Japanese officials.The launch took place in the port city of Sinpo, Hamgyong province, at about 10 a.m. local time Tuesday (9 p.m. ET Monday), South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said.Japan's Deputy Secretary General Yoshihiko Isozaki said two ballistic missiles were fired during Tuesday's launch, while South Korea's military only initially announced one projectile.South Korea's military said in a statement it was working with the United States to analyze details of the launch.The latest North Korean test follows months of seesawing tensions on the Korean Peninsula. Pyongyang has been testing a growing number of projectiles in 2021, including what it claimed was a new hypersonic missile in late September.Read MoreAt the same time, relations have been warming between North and South Korea, with Pyongyang agreeing to reopen official communications with Seoul on October 4.
    North Korean leader Kim Jong Un announced on Thursday that he was ready to reopen relations between the two Koreas, but accused the United States of proposing talks without changing its “hostile policy” on his country. The Korean Central News Agency reported that Kim made his remarks in parliament on Thursday for the second day in a row to discuss the government’s political, economic and social agenda. He noted that Kim had expressed his readiness to reopen the hotlines between the two Koreas in October, but criticized South Korea’s “illusions” for what he described as North Korea’s military provocations. He said it was up to South Korea to continue the conflict or work to improve its new relationship with Pyongyang. Kim spoke out strongly against Washington, accusing President Joe Biden’s new administration of “using cunning ways and tactics” while continuing to make military threats and deliver speeches. South Korea’s Ministry of Coordination, which is responsible for relations between Koreans, welcomed Kim’s provision of communication hotlines, but did not comment on his other comments. Meanwhile, Kim Yo-jong, his brother’s senior adviser,...
    by Sung-Yoon Lee, Tufts University The firing off of two long-range missiles by North Korea shows that rather than being unpredictable, the isolationist state is quite the opposite. Announced on Sept. 13, 2021, the testing of the cruise missiles – which reportedly can hit targets roughly 930 miles away (1,500 kilometers) – follows a well-worn playbook for North Korea: act belligerently, fire off missiles and then pivot to post-provocation peace mode and watch the concessions flow in. It was followed up by tit-for-tat missile testing on Sept. 15 by North and South Korea, further escalating tensions on the peninsula. As a keen follower of North Korea's strategic provocations – what I call the “Pyongyang Playbook," – I have seen this dynamic play out repeatedly over the past three decades. A show of strength by North Korea is especially likely, history has shown, when the U.S. is perceived to be weak internationally, as it is seen to be now following a messy Afghanistan withdrawal. The concern for the international community now is that with some key North Korean anniversaries coming up...
    North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un was natty in a light grey suit, smiling broadly as he greeted red-scarfed Young Pioneers high on the reviewing stand before thousands of his subjects summoned at midnight for a parade marking the 73rd anniversary of the founding of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea on Thursday. Beneath the forced gaiety, however, was an obvious reality. Economic duress, poverty and hunger had to take priority while his vaunted missiles, so proudly shown off at the last big military parade in January, remained in storage. Instead, old artillery pieces and armored vehicles trundled by, accompanied by high-stepping troops as the crowds cheered in unison, on command. But Kim’s appearance at the parade also may have conveyed an upbeat message. Contrary to so many negative reports over the years about his weight and health, he did look fine in the photos. His weight was down, which may have been one reason for him to show up conspicuously while saying nothing beyond a few words of greeting. “One of the purposes of North Korean military parades is...
    Seoul, South Korea (CNN)North Korea held a midnight military parade in Pyongyang early Thursday to mark the 73rd anniversary of its founding, the country's state media reported.North Korean leader Kim Jong Un appeared on a platform in Kim Il Sung square and waved at the crowd, but there was no mention of him giving a speech, according to Rodong Sinmun.North Korea experts noted that images of Kim appeared to show the North Korean leader has lost weight, adding support to a state media report from June that he had slimmed down."It's striking how much healthier Kim Jong Un is looking in these photos from yesterday," tweeted Martyn Williams, a Fellow working on the 38 North Project at the Stimson Center. "However he is doing it -- and there are theories -- he looks a lot better than he did a few months ago."State media reports made no mention of Kim Jong Un's sister and high official Kim Yo Jong.Read MoreNorth Korea leader Kim Jong Un attends a military parade in Pyongyang in this undated image supplied by North Korea's Korean...
    Send: 22/06/2021 – 09:32 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s sister saw the window on Tuesday 06/22, saying that Washington had “false” aspirations regarding the conversation with Pyongyang and that it would face “great disappointment”. Kim Yo-jong’s comments came after US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan described his brother’s initial reaction to Washington’s recent reconsideration of its approach to North Korea as “an interesting sign”. The US administration, led by Joe Biden, promised a pragmatic and measured approach based on diplomatic efforts to persuade Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs. Last week, the North Korean leader responded by saying that Pyongyang should be prepared for both dialogue and confrontation at the same time. Washington found his comments interesting, while Sullivan told the ABC that the US administration was “waiting to see if it would have any direct contact with us about the way forward.” But Kim Yo-jong, who is an important adviser to his brother, seemed to reduce the chances of any talks resuming. A report by the official North Korean news agency said...
    North Korean leader Kim Jong Un speaking on TV on Thursday. Ahn Young-joon/AP Photo A North Korean national has been extradited to the US to stand trial on money laundering charges. Mun Chol Myong was an “intelligence operative” based in Singapore, according to the indictment. Tensions have risen between Washington and Pyongyang, as Biden looks for a path forward. See more stories on Insider’s business page. The US has for the first time extradited a North Korean national to face a criminal trial in America, according to the Justice Department. An indictment unsealed this week alleged that Mun Chol Myong, 55, defrauded banks and laundered money in an attempt to skirt US and UN sanctions on North Korea. “He is the first North Korean intelligence operative – and the second ever foreign intelligence operative – to have been extradited to the United States for violation of our laws,” said John C. Demers, assistant attorney general for the DOJ National Security Division, in a statement. Demers continued: “We will continue to...
    For the first time since Joe Biden came to power, Pyongyang has tested short-range missiles. “We are aware of two missiles” The North Korea does not want to change strategy vis-à-vis United States, despite the change of tenant at the White House. Sunday March 21, Pyongyang tested short-range missiles, a move downplayed by Washington.“We are aware of two missiles (…) They are not sanctioned by the UN Security Council resolutions against the Pyongyang ballistic missile program“, confirmed an American official. Several experts considered that they were missiles cruise line, in response to joint military maneuvers by Washington and Seoul. No change of course on both sides Since February, the new US administration has tried to communicate with the North Korean leadership, to no avail. Last week, Pyongyang warned that she would not change her position vis-à-vis United States, unless the latter renounce their hostile policy towards North Korea. For their part, the United States assured that they are always open to dialogue. However, they warned that they will not give up...
    North Korea launched several short-range missiles last weekend shortly after denouncing the United States for holding its annual military exercises with South Korea, The Washington Post reported today, citing unidentified sources “familiar with the situation.” The launch, of which the sources give scant details, is the first provocation by Pyongyang to the new administration of US President Joe Biden. North Korea threatened last week with resume their weapons tests if South Korea and the United States did not suspend their traditional spring maneuvers, something that usually asks in the form of threats every time they occur. Until today, no short-range missile test had been made public, despite the fact that it happened days ago, while the White House continues without making clear what your position is regarding the North Korean regime and its nuclear program, although it has promised a new strategy in this regard. US intelligence had for weeks suspected that North Korea was preparing a missile launch, especially as a message to the new administration. The powerful Kim Yo-jong, the sister of the North Korean leader, Kim...
    The official North Korean news agency KCNA reported on Thursday that North Korea would boycott any attempts to communicate with the United States until Washington abandons its “hostile policy.” “There is no connection between the United States and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, and no dialogue can take place until the United States ends its hostile policy on the DBRK,” said First Deputy Minister Cho Son Hui. Foreign, cited KCNA South Korean news agency Yonhap. “Therefore, we will ignore such efforts by the United States in the future,” Ms Cho said. Pyongyang’s warning came while two senior US officials, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin were in Seoul. South Korea is the second stop of MM’s tour of the region. Blingen and Austin to strengthen with their allies a common front against the growing influence of nuclear-armed North Korea and China. The two U.S. officials met with their South Korean counterparts on Wednesday. They are scheduled to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Thursday. Seoul and Washington launched joint military maneuvers last...
    Former President Donald Trump invited North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un for a ride on Air Force One after the men met for a summit in Vietnam in 2019, insiders have revealed.   That offer and other details about Trump's extraordinary relationship with Kim were brought to light in the third and final part of the BBC docu-series 'Trump Takes On the World', airing Wednesday.   Trump and Kim held their second historic meeting in Hanoi, Vietnam, in February 2019 to negotiate North Korea's nuclear program.  The summit abruptly ended when the leaders failed to agree on what Kim would be willing to give up in exchange for sanctions relief, with Trump telling reporters: 'Sometimes you just have to walk.'   But Trump apparently left things on more cordial terms that he let on in the press, the BBC docu-series revealed.   'President Trump offered Kim a lift home on Air Force One,' Matthew Pottinger, the top Asia expert on Trump's National Security Council, told the outlet.  'The president knew that Kim had arrived on a multi-day train ride through China into Hanoi and the president said:...
    Leader Kim Jong Un has repeatedly apologized for economic mismanagement by promising prosperity to come while being named the party’s general secretary, a change of title intended according to analysts to consolidate his authority. But this congress theoretically organized every five years has given no sign that the regime intends to open its economy to improve the situation of its citizens, or change the status quo with Washington. On the contrary, Mr. Kim sent the next US President Joe Biden the message that Pyongyang intends to continue developing its banned military programs, if Washington does not make any concessions. The eight-day convention ended on Tuesday, one week before Mr. Biden took office. Analysts believe that Pyongyang is well aware that the development of its economy is contingent on easing sanctions. But the regime shows no willingness to reverse its nuclear and ballistic programs which are the reason for these international retaliatory measures. Mr. Kim, whose relationship with Donald Trump had calmed down after the initial insults, presented the United States as North Korea’s “main enemy” and pledged to continue...
    North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was given a new title, 'general secretary' of the ruling Workers' Party, a post held by his late father and grandfather, state media reported Monday.  The appointment is largely symbolic, apparently aimed at bolstering his authority amid growing economic challenges at home. The party's ongoing congress, the first in kind in five years, announced Kim's new title during its sixth-day session on Sunday.  A congress statement said Kim 'has gloriously realized the historic mission to complete the country's nuclear build-up plan,' according to the official Korean Central News Agency. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, attends the ruling party congress in Pyongyang, North Korean, Saturday A general view of attendees at the 8th Congress of the Workers' Party in Pyongyang, North Korea The party's ongoing congress, the first in kind in five years, announced Kim's new title during its sixth-day session on Sunday It's largely seen as a symbolic move as Kim has already been the party's top leader. During a 2016 party congress, he was named to 'party...
    Kim Jong-un’s influential sister has launched a scathing verbal attack on South Korea’s foreign minister. Kim Yo-young, The sister of the North Korean leader, described Kang Kyung-wa’s comments as “irresponsible” and accused him of trying to damage existing relations between Pyongyang and Seoul. Kong said last weekend that it was hard to believe the North’s insistence that the corona virus was released a year after the outbreak. North Korea’s claims cannot be verified, but experts say the country is unlikely to have escaped the virus, despite tightening its borders and banning international flights in late January. Kim Yo-jong said in a statement issued by the official KCNA news agency on Wednesday: “This can be seen from irresponsible comments. [Kang] Regardless of the consequences she is so keen to further cool the frozen relations between the North South Korea . ” Some describe Kim, a senior official of the ruling Labor Party, as the regime’s real second order: “Her real motive is very clear. We will never forget her words, for which she will have to pay a lot.” Kang told...
    Hong Kong (CNN)As Barack Obama ended his 75th day as President of the United States, the engines of a massive North Korean rocket roared to life half a world away -- sparking one of the first major international crises of his administration.Pyongyang's first missile test during Donald Trump's presidency came even sooner. On his 23rd day in office, as he and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sat down for dinner on the terrace of the US President's opulent Florida club, Mar-a-Lago, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un oversaw the successful test launch of a solid-fueled ballistic missile. So if former Vice President Joseph Biden were to unseat Trump in the November 3 presidential election, would North Korea again conduct some sort of provocation in a new administration's early days? When it comes to divining North Korea's intentions, some words of wisdom variously attributed to both Mark Twain and New York Yankee's legend Yogi Berra ring particularly true: Predictions are hard, especially about the future.This is, after all, North Korea, one of the world's most isolated societies and secretive governments. Read...
    Kim Jong-un has declared that pet dogs are a symbol of capitalist 'decadence' and ordered that dogs in Pyongyang be rounded up - and owners are fearful that their beloved pets are being used to solve the nation's food shortages. Dictator Kim announced in July that owning a pet is now against the law, denouncing having a dog at home as 'a tainted trend of bourgeois ideology'. 'Authorities have identified households with pet dogs and are forcing them to give them up or forcefully confiscating them and putting them down', a source told South Korea's Chosun Ilbo newspaper. 'Some of the dogs are sent to state-run zoos or sold to dog meat restaurants'. Kim Jong-un has declared that pet dogs are a symbol of capitalist 'decadence' and ordered that dogs in Pyongyang be rounded up Dog meat has long been considered a delicacy on the Korean Peninsula, although the tradition of eating dogs is gradually fading out in South Korea.  Still, an estimated 1 million dogs are reared on farms to be consumed every year in the South. Man's...
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