North Korea Used The New Year To Claim It Is Ready To Test Their First Intercontinental Ballistic Missile

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Following reports that North Korea was ready to ramp up its nuclear production in 2017, Kim Jong-un himself stirred more fears with his annual New Year’s speech by claiming the nation is in the final stages of testing its first intercontinental ballistic missile. According to the New York Times, North Korea conducted at least 20 ballistic missile tests in 2016 with a successful long-range test in February. The nation has claimed to have missiles that could reach the United States in the past, but its inclusion in Kim’s annual speech raises concerns according to the Times:

In his annual New Year’s Day speech, which was broadcast on the North’s state-run KCTV on Sunday, Mr. Kim spoke proudly of the strides he said his country has made in its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs. He said that North Korea would continue to bolster its weapons programs as long as the United States remained hostile and continued its joint military exercises with South Korea.

“We have reached the final stage in preparations to test-launch an intercontinental ballistic rocket,”

Experts claim that another weapons test by North Korea is sure to occur within the early months of the year, perhaps even before the inauguration of Donald Trump later in January. The New York Times points to the Trump presidency and the leadership change in South Korea as one reason North Korea may push up their weapons testing, possibly to gauge what the response will be going forward.

Check out the original article of North Korea Used The New Year To Claim It Is Ready To Test Their First Intercontinental Ballistic Missile in its entirety http://uproxx.com/news/north-korea-intercontinental-ballistic-missile-test/.

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