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North Korea is making missile-ready nuclear weapons, analysts say

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  • Donald Trump
    Donald Trump
    45th President of the United States

North Korea has developed a nuclear weapon small enough to fit inside missiles and travel long distances, according to US analysts.

In July, the US calculated about 60 nuclear weapons were controlled by the country's leader Kim Jong-un, but analysts said the new report has raised the estimated number of bombs in North Korea's arsenal.

On Tuesday, US President Donald Trump told a press briefing North Korea would be met with “fire and fury like the world has never seen” if they made any more threats.

But a spokesperson for the military threatened to target the island territory Guam if there is further "US provocation," CNBC reported.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un watching a military parade earlier this year. Photo: AP
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un watching a military parade earlier this year. Photo: AP

US President Donald Trump told a press briefing on Tuesday that North Korea would be met with “fire and fury like the world has never seen” if they made any more threats.

Speaking in New Jersey, Mr Trump said: “North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States".

“He has been very threatening," Mr Trump said referring to North Korean lead Kim Jong-un.

Experts initially thought it would be years before the weapon could reach distant targets, but the new report suggests the country has already developed these missiles, the Washington Post reported.

"The IC [intelligence community] assesses North Korea has produced nuclear weapons for ballistic missile delivery, to include delivery by ICBM-class missiles," the assessment read, according to the Washington Post.

  • 'We will make US pay': North Korea angry over stronger UN sanctions

  • Japan says North Korea poses 'new level of threat'

Earlier on Tuesday, Japan's Defence Ministry said "it is conceivable that North Korea's nuclear weapons program has already considerably advanced and it is possible that North Korea has already achieved the miniaturisation of nuclear weapons and has acquired nuclear warheads."

This comes after North Korea said it was ready to give the United States a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force if it takes military action.

In a transcript of a statement by Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho, given to media at a regional meeting in Manila, Pyongyang called new UN sanctions "fabricated" and warned there would be "strong follow-up measures" and acts of justice.

A file photo of a previous North Korean missile launch. Photo: AP
A file photo of a previous North Korean missile launch. Photo: AP

It said the resolution showed the United Nations had abused its authority.

The statement said its intercontinental ballistic missile tests in July proved that the entire United States was in its firing range, and those missiles were a legitimate means of self-defence.

North Korea held a large military parade to mark the 105th anniversary of the birth of its founder. Photo: AP
North Korea held a large military parade to mark the 105th anniversary of the birth of its founder. Photo: AP

It was not immediately clear whether the statement was read to the ASEAN Regional Forum on Monday.

The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, called the US-drafted resolution "the single largest economic sanctions package ever leveled against" North Korea.

In a statement carried by the North's state-run Korean Central News Agency, North Korea's government said the sanctions were a "violent infringement of its sovereignty" that was caused by a "heinous US plot to isolate and stifle" the country.

"We will make the US pay by a thousand-fold for all the heinous crimes it commits against the state and people of this country," the statement said.

North Korea test-launched two intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) last month as part of its efforts to possess a long-range missile capable of striking anywhere in the mainland US.

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho has said there will be
North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho has said there will be
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