North Korea fires Two Cruise Missiles

According to South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), North Korea has fired two cruise missiles off the West Coast on March 21, 2021. It marks first missile test of Pyongyang since April 14, 2020.

Highlights

Firing of two cruise missiles is being seen as testing administration of the US President, Joe Biden. North Korea has maintained a self-imposed moratorium on nuclear and long-range missile testing since the year 2017.

USA’s stand

United States made no big deal with respect to the firings. US President just said “nothing much has changed”. The senior administration officials were of the view that, launches were not in violation of UN Security Council resolutions. A senior US administration official considered the launches as normal military activity by North Korea.

Background

On April 14, 2020, North Korea had launched its multiple short-range cruise missiles into East Sea to mark the birthday of late national founder and South Korea’s general elections.

North Korea–United States relations

The political and diplomatic relations between both the countries have been historically hostile since Korean War. Present day relation between US and North Korea is largely defined by US economic sanctions against North Korea for North Korea’s nuclear program, Joint U.S.-South Korea military exercises in South China Sea, Heavy U.S. military presence in South Korea and North Korea’s demand of eliminating US nuclear arsenal which could reach Korean peninsula. Both the countries have not adopted “No First Use Nuclear Weapons Policy”.

North Korea’s Nuclear Weapons Program

Nuclear Weapons Program of North Korea comprises of six tests of nuclear weapons and development of long-range missiles which have the capability to strike targets thousands of miles away. It also comprises of North Korea’s ongoing threats to strike United States and South Korea with the help of nuclear weapons and conventional forces.

United States’ Nuclear Weapons Program

US launched its Nuclear Weapon Program in Guam island which comprise of B1-B bombers and B2 Spirit bombers. these nuclear weapons are 60 times more destructive than bomb dropped on Nagasaki. US conducts precision strike exercises to simulate pre-emptive nuclear strike against North Korea, from Guam.

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