Evacuations, preparations, and observations as North Korea’s potential missile firing approaches

This image made from video of an Aug. 14, 2017, still image broadcast in a news bulletin on Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017, by North Korea's KRT shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un receiving a briefing in Pyongyang. North Korea said leader Kim Jong Un was briefed on his military's plans to launch missiles in waters near Guam days after the Korean People's Army announced its preparing to create "enveloping fire" near the U.S. military hub in the Pacific. Independent journalists were not given access to cover the event depicted in this photo. (KRT via AP Video)

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North Korea boasted a “perfect success” in the testing of its most powerful nuclear weapon to date. The blast from the weapon is said to be more powerful than that of the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. North Korea is also reportedly planning to launch a ballistic missile in the coming days.

Now, governments around the world are reacting as concern for safety grows:

  • South Korea requests more weapons and conducts military drills

South Korea requested that the United States remove a provision that would limit the size of its warheads. President Trump announced that South Korea and Japan would be allowed to purchase an increased amount of “sophisticated military equipment” from the US.

“We believe the unlimited warhead payload will be useful in responding to North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats,” said South Korean Defence Ministry spokesman Moon Sang-gyun.

The South Korean government conducted military drills on Monday by firing missiles into the sea.

  • Japan seeks to evacuate citizens from South Korea

Japan is exploring the possible evacuation of 60,000 citizens living in or currently visiting South Korea.

“There is a possibility of further provocations,” said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. “We need to remain extremely vigilant and do everything we can to ensure the safety of our people.

Only a week ago, Japanese citizens took cover when a North Korean missile flew over his country. It reportedly broke into three pieces before falling into the sea.

  • The United States stands up for its citizens and allies

News of North Korea’s successful nuclear test means that the North Korean government is potentially one step closer to obtaining the capability to strike anywhere in the US.

Following North Korea’s nuclear weapon test, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley accused the North Korean government of “begging for war” during an emergency session of the Security Council. Secretary of Defense James Mattis also promised that a threat made against the US, one of its territories, or one of its allies “will be met with a massive military response — a response both effective and overwhelming.”

  • Russia warns against amped up military response

Russian President Vladimir Putin suggested that the increased military response to North Korea would end disastrously.

“In this situation, pressing on military hysteria will not bring anything. This may end up in a global catastrophe and huge amount of human life lost,” he told reporters after urging a dialogue with the country.

He also shared his belief that the use of tougher sanctions against North Korea was “useless and ineffective.”

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