North Korea

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N. Korea: We'll Test ICBM 'Any Time'

US says it will shoot down any potential threat

(Newser) - In what the New York Times calls a rebuke to Donald Trump, North Korea declared Sunday that it will launch an intercontinental ballistic missile at any time from "anywhere determined by supreme headquarters." The statement from a Foreign Ministry spokesman to Pyongyang's official KCNA news agency follows... More »

China Blasts Trump's Twitter 'Obsession'

As South Korea hires official to monitor Trump's tweets

(Newser) - A few too many tweets directed at China may have finally prompted the country to lash out at Donald Trump. An editorial posted to the Chinese website of state-run news agency Xinhua on Tuesday slammed Trump's "obsession with 'Twitter diplomacy'" as "undesirable." It continued:... More »

S. Korea Will Soon Be Ready to Take Out Kim Jong Un

Brigade would operate in the 'event of war'

(Newser) - South Korea likely stands alone in having the words "decapitation unit" feature into its New Year's resolution. As CNN reports, the country's defense minister now says the formation of a brigade that could take out Kim Jong Un and other North Korea bigwigs in the event of... More »

Trump's North Korea Tweets End With China Slam

'Nice!'

(Newser) - The experts Reuters spoke with described it as feasible , but Donald Trump wasn't among that cohort: In a Monday night tweet , the president-elect addressed Kim Jong Un's Jan. 1 assertion that North Korea is nearly ready to test an intercontinental ballistic missile: "North Korea just stated that... More »

Experts: North Korea's ICBM Claim Not Bluster

Reuters uses the word 'plausible'

(Newser) - Kim Jong Un's first announcement of 2017—that North Korea is in the "final stages" of development of a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile and a test launch is imminent—may very well be a credible one. Reuters talks to international weapons experts in the wake of Kim's... More »

Kim's New Year's Day Speech: 'Regrets,' 'Guilty Conscience'

As well as an announcement that N. Korea is in 'final stages' for ICBM test launch

(Newser) - Kim Jong Un was up bright and early New Year's Day to make his first announcement of 2017: that North Korea is in the "final stages" of development of a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile and a test launch is imminent, ABC Australia reports. In his address on state... More »

In Pyongyang, Xmas Trees Are Up All Year

But it's hardly the most festive place on Earth

(Newser) - If Santa Claus stops in North Korea this year, he'll find some trees and lights and might even hear a Christmas song or two. But he won't encounter even a hint of what Christmas actually means—not under a regime that sees foreign religion as a very real... More »

North Korea Still Expanding Its Labor Camps: Reports

Satellite images show 'abuse on an industrial scale'

(Newser) - A 2014 UN report accusing Kim Jong Un of crimes against humanity through forced labor camps apparently did nothing to deter him. In fact, North Korea has increased and expanded its camps in the years since, according to satellite images included in a Committee for Human Rights in North Korea... More »

'Fatty Kim the Third' Not an OK Nickname in China

But the AP notes 'Kim Fat Fat Fat' still works

(Newser) - Chinese Internet users apparently have to search for news of Kim Jong Un by his given name, or at least not via the term "Jin San Pang"—meaning "Fatty Kim the Third." The phrase has been blocked on Chinese websites including social media site Weibo and... More »

North Korea's First Lady Has Vanished From Public View

Ri Sol Ju hasn't been seen in public in 7 months

(Newser) - Somebody get Ri Sol Ju on a milk carton. UPI reports North Korea's first lady hasn't been seen in public since visiting a new department store in Pyongyang—seven months ago. Her husband, Kim Jong Un, has made 100 reported public appearances in 2016, but Ri was only... More »

How Escape From N. Korea Leads to Online Sex Work in China

'WaPo' details lives of women fleeing from one bad situation to another as online sex 'video chatters'

(Newser) - "Why are our lives so different, just because of where we are born?" That's the question posed to the Washington Post by Suh, a 30-year-old North Korean woman now being held in a Bangkok detention center after being busted by local cops while trying to cross from Laos... More »

North Korea Zoo Has a Smoking Chimp

Of course it does

(Newser) - Azalea the chimpanzee can touch her nose, take a thank-you bow, and do a little jig. She can also put away a pack of cigarettes a day from her post at North Korea's Central Zoo, which has crowds cheering and animal activists jeering, the Guardian reports. Azalea, known as... More »

N. Korea: We'll Make Nuclear Strike First If We Have to

Warns it will take preemptive action if US, South Korea don't back off

(Newser) - A top North Korean official says that the US has nukes positioned off its coast aimed at "our country, our capital, and our Dear Leader," notes the country won't back down from this threat, and warns it might even take the first step if it feels provoked.... More »

US Condemns Failed N. Korean Missile Test

Reiterates 'ironclad' commitment to South Korea's security

(Newser) - US defense agencies detected an attempted missile launch in western North Korea late Friday, near the city of Kusong, Reuters reports. The object—believed to be a Musudan intermediate-range ballistic missile—failed immediately after launch, per South Korea's military. American and South Korean defense agencies declined to provide any... More »

How Johnson Answered a Simple Q About Kim Jong Un

'Really?'

(Newser) - Gary Johnson's had his "Aleppo moment." He's had his "forgetting world leaders" moment. And now the Libertarian candidate for president has completed the foot-in-mouth trifecta with his "Are you seriously asking me for the name of North Korea's leader?" moment. USA Today reports... More »

Kim Jong Un Reportedly Hit By More Defections

Gov't says asylum seekers haven't contacted Japan

(Newser) - One or two officials may have followed the lead of a diplomat in London and defected from North Korea. A Health Ministry official stationed at North Korea's embassy in Beijing—tasked with sourcing medical supplies for a clinic visited by Kim Jong Un and his family—has reportedly sought... More »

N. Korea Soldier Walks Across DMZ to Defect

He made it across 2.5 heavily fortified miles

(Newser) - South Korea's military said Thursday that a North Korean soldier had crossed the border between the rivals to defect. South Korea's Joint Chief of Staff said military officials were investigating the North Korean soldier, who defected across the central-east portion of the military demarcation line, which is inside... More »

Model F-16 Wows Crowd at North Korea's First Air Show

Officials aren't saying where they got it

(Newser) - Now here's something you don't see every day: an F-16 fighter jet buzzing through the skies of North Korea and launching fireworks. The plane roaring over people's heads at the country's first air show Sunday was actually a remote-controlled mock-up of the fabled US Air Force... More »

S. Korea: We're Willing to Kill Kim Jong Un

Defense minister delivers blunt comments in parliament

(Newser) - This should calm tensions on the Korean peninsula. Asked in parliament on Wednesday whether South Korea had a plan in place to take out North Korean leader Kim Jong Un should the need arise, the country's defense minister didn't beat around the bush. "Yes, we do have... More »

N. Korea's Internet Just Leaked— All 28 Websites

(Newser) - Have a few minutes? You can peruse all of North Korea's websites. The country's main Domain Name System server was reportedly misconfigured on Monday and a security engineer for Uber took notice. Matthew Bryant was able to access data on all .kp domain names, then shared it on... More »

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