Kim Jong-un, the leader of the totalitarian regime, is believed to be amassing a deadly nuclear arsenal that could reach 242 weapons that could be attached as deadly warheads onto dozens of intercontinental ballistic missiles by the year 2027. A chilling report released by the Seoul-based Asan Institute for Policy Studies warned that negotiations between the US and North Korea were unlikely to be effective in persuading the reclusive regime to abandon their stockpiling ambitions.
The report released last week by the Asan Institute for Policy Studies stated: “As North Korea’s nuclear and missile capabilities expand the credibility of US deterrence has greatly diminished and its effectiveness is no longer certain.”
The report, entitled ‘Countering the Risks of North Korean Nuclear Weapons’, added: “It is estimated North Korea has acquired 30-36kg of plutonium and between 175kg minimum and 645 kg maximum of enriched uranium as of 2019.
“Based on these numbers, it is estimated that the total number of North Korea’s nuclear weapons by 2027 would be between 151 and 242, in addition to tens of mobile Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, ICBMs.”
The report warned that North Korea could begin a “limited nuclear use by taking Seoul and other major South Korean cities as hostages to nuclear strikes, and attacking smaller cities with nuclear weapons to prove its intention”.
The institute also warned North Korea could obliterate the South Korean armed forces with “40 to 60 nuclear weapons” and also threaten “the US mainland with nuclear weapons”.
The Asan Institute for Policy studies advised the US and South Korea to begin deploying tactical nuclear weapons in South Korea to defend against this growing threat.
Currently, North Korea is estimated to possess from 67 to 116 nuclear weapons.
This alarming stockpile is expected to grow by 12 to 18 weapons per year.
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But Mr Biden was relatively unmoved by the launch of the two short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan.
At a news conference at the end of March Mr Biden said: “We’re consulting with our allies and partners.
“And there will be responses if they choose to escalate.
“We will respond accordingly.
“But I’m also prepared for some form of diplomacy, but it has to be conditioned upon the end result of denuclearization.”