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North Korea to conduct nuclear test 'targeted at the United States'

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pyongyang (shutterstock)
pyongyang (shutterstock)

North Korea has announced plans for its third nuclear weapon test. In comments carried by the state-run KCNA and reported by Reuters, the country's National Defence Commission said "We are not disguising the fact that the various satellites and long-range rockets that we will fire and the high-level nuclear test we will carry out are targeted at the United States." No time frame was given for the test.

On Tuesday, the United Nations agreed to expand sanctions against North Korea for its unauthorized satellite launch in December; in response, the country announced plans to send further rockets into space and bolster its nuclear program. There have been two North Korean nuclear tests before, in 2006 and 2009 — the first produced a small explosion, but the second is generally considered to have been a success. However, there is serious doubt over the country's ability to launch a long-range nuclear missile.