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North Korea declares nuclear test.

By Mark Magnier and Bruce Wallace BEIJING--North Korea on Monday announced it had carried out a successful underground nuclear test, following through on a threat issued last week and defying repeated calls from around the world to stand down. In an announcement on the official Korean Central News Agency The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) is the state news agency of North Korea and has existed since December 5, 1946. The reports mainly consist of propaganda, the personality cult of Kim Jong-il and his father.

KCNA is headquartered in the capital city of Pyongyang.
 monitored in Seoul, the North Korean government in Pyongyang said the test was carried out without radioactive leakage. If confirmed, the test would make North Korea the eighth declared nuclear power, joining the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , Russia, China, Britain, France, India and Pakistan. Israel also is believed to possess nuclear weapons, although it has not officially declared so. It is unclear whether North Korea has the technical capabilities to mount a nuclear device atop a missile for delivery. Pyongyang has previously tested long-range missiles, including one that flew over Japan in 1998. "The nuclear test is a historic event that brought happiness to our military and people," the agency said. "The nuclear test will contribute to maintaining peace and stability in the Korean peninsula and surrounding region." The South Korean news agency Yonhap, citing defense officials, said the test occurred at 10:36 a.m. in Hwaderi, near the northeastern city of Kilju. The US Geological Survey The term geological survey can be used to describe both the conduct of a survey for geological purposes and an institution holding geological information.

A geological survey
 reported on its Web site that it had detected a magnitude 4.2 seismic event on the peninsula at 10:37. A US official said early Monday morning that although the administration was not yet confirming the test, "we're not saying at this point that we doubt it, either." The White House was in contact with Chinese and South Korean officials to discuss a possible response, Reuters reported Monday. South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun
This is a Korean name; the family name is Roh.
Roh Moo-hyun (IPA: [ʌn]) (born September 1, 1946 in Gimhae, South Gyeongsang, South Korea) is the President of South Korea.
 convened a meeting of officials Monday to discuss Seoul's response to the test. Roh was scheduled to meet visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Shinzo Abe (安倍 晋三 Abe Shinzō  in what had been planned as a fence-mending summit between the two nations. Japanese officials said they were unable to confirm the test independently. "I am aware of the declaration by North Korea that it has conducted a nuclear test," Abe told reporters traveling with him in Seoul, according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 Japan's Kyodo News Kyodo News (共同通信社 Kyōdō Tsūshinsha) is a nonprofit cooperative news agency based in Minato-ku, Tokyo. It was established in 1945 and it distributes news to almost all newspapers, and radio and television networks in Japan.  agency. "Japan is in contact with the United States and China for intelligence analysis ... and I will discuss with the South Korean side how to respond." Kyodo also quoted a Japanese defense official as saying that Japan had been informed of the detonation by Chinese military The Chinese Military could refer to two things:
  • Military of the People's Republic of China
  • Military of the Republic of China
 officials, who had reportedly been forewarned about the test. China's Foreign Ministry acknowledged the test in a statement on its Web site. North Korea, it said, "has ignored the widespread opposition of the international community and conducted a nuclear test brazenly." The Japanese government had threatened further economic sanctions Economic sanctions are economic penalties applied by one country (or group of countries) on another for a variety of reasons. Economic sanctions include, but are not limited to, tariffs, trade barriers, import duties, and import or export quotas.  if Pyongyang proceeded with a nuclear test. But Tokyo has little leverage with the North Koreans, having already curbed its limited trade and investment activity. "The prime minister's office The Prime Minister's Office is a small department which provides advice to a Prime Minister in some countries:
  • Office of the Prime Minister (Canada)
  • British Prime Minister's Office
See also
  • Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
 has been working on options for additional sanctions over the past two or three days," Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso Third Realigned Junichiro Koizumi>Koizumi Cabinet

Secretary Shinzo Abe
Internal Affairs Heizo Takenaka
Justice Seiken Sugiura
Foreign Affairs Taro Aso
Finance Sadakazu Tanigaki
Education Kenji Kosaka
Health Jiro Kawasaki
 told reporters Monday. "So probably Japan would take those actions, but it would have to decide which options to take." Many observers in Tokyo and Seoul had expected North Korea to make good on its threats to test a nuclear device. They noted that North Korea's statement last week included pledges similar to those made by other nations before they conducted tests: no first use of nuclear weapons and nonproliferation non·pro·lif·er·a·tion  
Of, relating to, or calling for an end to the acquisition of nuclear weapons by additional nations: a nonproliferation treaty.
. "That was the language of a government preparing to test," says Kim Tae-woo of the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses The Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) runs three federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs) focusing on defense and scientific issues. Centers
The IDA Studies and Analyses FFRDC is co-located with IDA headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.
. "The optimists were saying Pyongyang was just threatening a test to get negotiating leverage, but they miss the point that North Korea wants to be a nuclear power state. They are not stupid. They know a nuclear test worsens their relations with China, with Russia, with South Korea. They know what losses they will suffer. "But they had an ambition to be a nuclear state, and they were prepared to do whatever was necessary to prove they would resist American pressure." The North Korean test also strikes a blow to Roh's policy of trying to engage rather than confront Kim Jong Il's government. Many observers had predicted a test would gravely damage Roh's already weakened government, providing ammunition to conservative critics who have long argued that the president's policy amounted to appeasement appeasement

Foreign policy of pacifying an aggrieved nation through negotiation in order to prevent war. The prime example is Britain's policy toward Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany in the 1930s.
. As rumors spread last week of an imminent test, the UN Security Council on Friday unanimously urged North Korea to scrap plans for a nuclear test and return to six-party talks--involving the two Koreas, China, Japan, the United States and Russia--or face unspecified consequences. The statement said that a test would "bring universal condemnation by the international community". The US ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, said Friday that the United States was prepared to push for international economic sanctions. "If they do test it, it will be a very different world the day after," he said before the meeting. "There would be another nuclear power. This would be proof positive of North Korea having a weapon." Early Monday, Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said: "If North Korea has conducted a nuclear test, it will only further isolate them from the international community." North Korea has previously timed its military exercises to coincide with significant dates: It test-fired missiles on July 4, despite international warnings. Monday was Workers' Party Day in North Korea, a national holiday.A* LATWP News ServiceNorth Korea declares nuclear test

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Publication:The Star (Amman, Jordan)
Date:Oct 19, 2006
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