US policy unchanged after DPRK declared itself nuclear state: WH
Washington is still committed to "finding a solution to achieve the goal of demilitarizing the Korean Peninsula."
The US strategy toward North Korea has not changed since the latter declared itself a nuclear weapons state, and Washington will continue to seek a diplomatic solution to achieve the goal of demilitarizing the Korean Peninsula, according to White House Spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre.
North Korea's Supreme People's Assembly passed a decree on Wednesday on the Nuclear Weapons Policy, which legalizes the country's leader's possession of nuclear weapons and gives him ultimate authority over the use of the nuclear arsenal.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un stated during the event that no sanctions will force Pyongyang to give up its nuclear arsenal.
"[W]e've been very clear since the beginning of this President's administration that our policy remains unchanged," Jean-Pierre said. "The United States remains focused on continuing to coordinate closely with our allies and partners to address the threats posed by DPRK [North Korea] and to advance our shared objective of the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. That has not changed."
Jean-Pierre claimed that the United States has made clear that it does not have hostile intent toward North Korea and will "continue to seek diplomacy and are prepared to meet without preconditions."
North Korea continues to ignore US requests for diplomatic talks, according to Jean-Pierre, and Washington has been "very clear and upfront about that."
"But again, we remain fully committed to the defense of the Republic of Korea using the full range of defense," she claimed.
The conditions for the use of nuclear weapons include an attack or imminent threat of an attack on North Korea by an enemy country using nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction; an attack on the leadership and command of North Korea's nuclear forces by hostile nuclear or non-nuclear nations; and a destructive attack on the country's strategically important facilities, according to the Yonhap news agency.
Nuclear weapons state
DPRK passed legislation that declares the country a nuclear-weapon state, giving its leader, Kim Jong Un, sole authority over nuclear decisions, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap, citing Pyongyang's state media.
The 7th Session of the DPRK's 14th Supreme People's Assembly approved a decree titled Nuclear Weapons Policy on Wednesday, as per the Korean Central News Agency.
The law, which included 11 paragraphs, governs the use of nuclear weapons.
The new law stipulated that DPRK could use nuclear weapons under these conditions: the imminent threat of an attack on DPRK by an enemy country using nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction, an attack on the leadership and command of DPRK's nuclear forces, and an attack on the country's strategically vital facilities.
The third paragraph, titled "command and control of nuclear weapons," states that Kim Jong Un has the sole authority to dispose of nuclear arsenals and "makes all nuclear weapons decisions."
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In the same context, the DPRK's leader Kim Jong Un said in July that his country will never abandon nuclear weapons needed to counter the United States, which he accused of trying to weaken Pyongyang's defenses and eventually bring his government down.
"The aim of the US is not only to eliminate our nuclear weapons but to completely destroy our nuclear power to force us to give up the right of self-defense, to weaken us to overthrow our regime at any time," Kim Jong Un told the 7th Session of the 14th Supreme People's Assembly, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.