The presidents of both countries have “tasked their teams to craft an effective, coordinated response to a wide range of situations,” a spokesman for the National Security Council said in Washington on Tuesday. This includes the “use of nuclear weapons”.
A US spokesman clarified that joint nuclear weapons exercises are not an option as Seoul has no nuclear weapons of its own. However, the US remains “fully committed to our alliance” and provides “deterrence through the full extent of US defense resources”.
North Korea wants to increase its nuclear arsenal
The office of South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said the two allies exchanged views on “the use of US nuclear weapons in response to North Korea’s nuclear weapons.”
North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong Un on Sunday called for a “dramatic” expansion of his country’s nuclear arsenal, adding to the already tense situation on the Korean Peninsula.
The North Korean regime threatens to escalate
Isolated North Korea continues to expand its arsenal and nuclear capabilities, with the communist leadership in Pyongyang repeatedly threatening military expansion into the region. In the past year, North Korea has conducted an unprecedented number of weapons tests, including the November launch of its most advanced ICBM.
“Any nuclear attack by North Korea against the United States or its allies and partners would be unacceptable and would bring an end to that regime,” the US Department of Defense said.
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