North Korea says it can “burn Manhattan to ashes” with a hydrogen bomb on an intercontinental ballistic missile.
It’s the latest threat from Pyongyang against a backdrop of joint military drills between South Korea and the United States off the coast of the divided peninsula.
Pyongyang said its hydrogen bomb is more powerful than anything developed by te Soviet Union, The Telegraph reports, citing state media DPRK today.
But many experts are skeptical about North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s claims of the regime’s technological capabilities and doubt its ability to launch a long-range missile to the US east coast.
The increasingly strong rhetoric emerging from Pyongyang appears to reflect Kim’s anger at the international community’s tough new sanctions recently imposed in response to recent nuclear and missile tests.
“Our hydrogen bomb is much bigger than the one developed by the Soviet Union,” DPRK Today was quoted as saying in the Washington Post.
“If this H-bomb were to be mounted on an intercontinental ballistic missile and fall on Manhattan in New York City, all the people there would be killed immediately and the city would burn down to ashes.”
The newly developed hydrogen bomb “surpasses our imagination,” a scientist named Cho Hyong-il is quoted as saying.
“The H-bomb developed by the Soviet Union in the past was able to smash windows of buildings 1,000 kms away and the heat was strong enough to cause third-degree burns 100 kilometers away.”
North Korea angered the international community in January when a fourth nuclear test was conducted, although the regime’s claims that it was a hydrogen bomb as opposed to an atomic device were doubted by experts.
The following month, it launched what was claimed to be a rocket into orbit, although it was widely regarded to form part of the regime’s long-range ballistic missile programme.
Tensions are currently running high in the region, with the largest ever war exercises so far staged on the Korean peninsula launched last week, involving an estimated 290,000 South Korean troops alongside 15,000 US military.
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