Skip to main content

North Korea promises 'all-out action' amid talk of nuclear test

From K.J. Kwon, CNN
updated 9:58 PM EST, Mon February 11, 2013
(File) A nuclear test site and water cooling plant are pictured in North Korea.
(File) A nuclear test site and water cooling plant are pictured in North Korea.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: "It's part and parcel of their threats to engage in more provocations," says U.S. official
  • U.S. officials say a new North Korean nuclear test could come at any time
  • North Korea has conducted two previous nuclear tests, in 2006 and 2009

(CNN) -- Amid talk of a possible nuclear bomb test, North Korea vowed Tuesday to carry out a "high-intensity, all-out action."

The promise emerged from a meeting of the ruling Workers' Party and was reported by the state-run news agency KCNA.

"It emphasized the necessity to continue on with launching artificial satellites ... and long-range rockets," the agency reported.

It also said that the party leadership promised to "stage a high-intensity, all-out action, and maximize its preparation ... so that just after an order is issued, we can destroy and sweep America and the South Korean puppet army, and achieve the historic achievement of reunified Korea."

3rd nuclear test could empower N. Korea
Bizarre North Korea nuclear dream video
North Korea threatens new nuclear test

Last month, the U.N. Security Council voted to tighten sanctions on Pyongyang, after the North launched a satellite aboard a long-range rocket in December.

The North Koreans responded by announcing they planned another nuclear test and more long-range rocket launches as part of a new phase of confrontation with the United States.

Since then, U.S. officials have told CNN they believe a nuclear test could come at any time.

"I don't think there's anything special to it, except that it comes in context of renewed trash-talking from Pyongyang. But on whole it's part and parcel of their threats to engage in more provocations," a senior U.S. administration official said about Tuesday's announcement.

North Korea has conducted two previous nuclear tests, in 2006 and 2009, and proclaimed itself a "nuclear state" in 2012.

U.S. analysts believe the 2006 test had a yield of about 1 kiloton -- comparable to the explosive power of about 1,000 tons of TNT -- while the second was roughly 2 kilotons, National Intelligence Director James Clapper told a Senate committee in 2012.

By comparison, the bomb the United States dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 was roughly 15 kilotons.

CNN's Elise Labott and Matt Smith contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:17 PM EST, Wed December 17, 2014
Sources tell Evan Perez that U.S. investigators have determined North Korea was in fact behind the Sony hacking.
updated 8:48 PM EST, Wed December 17, 2014
Obama says people should "go to the movies" without fear, despite hackers' threats against venues that show "The Interview".
updated 7:35 PM EST, Mon December 1, 2014
CNN's Brian Todd reports on the hacking of Sony Pictures and whether North Korea could be behind it.
updated 6:42 PM EST, Thu December 18, 2014
As the U.S. gets ready to blame the Sony hack on North Korea, a troublesome question is emerging: Just what is North Korea capable of?
updated 8:57 PM EST, Mon December 8, 2014
A retired Silicon Valley executive and Korean War veteran was hauled off his plane at Pyongyang in 2013. Here's what happened next.
updated 5:57 AM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
A recent defector from North Korea tells of the harrowing escape into China via Chinese 'snakehead' gangs.
updated 7:39 PM EST, Mon November 17, 2014
CNN's Amara Walker speaks to a former North Korean prison guard about the abuses he witnessed and was forced to enact on prisoners.
updated 12:59 AM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
The chief of the Commission of Inquiry into North Korea's human rights says the world can no longer plead ignorance to the regime's offenses.
updated 7:34 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Kim Jong Il's former bodyguard tells of the beatings and starvation he endured while imprisoned in the country's most notorious prison camp.
updated 1:34 PM EST, Mon November 10, 2014
Christian Whiton argues "putting the United States at the same table as lawless thugs isn't just morally repugnant -- it's ineffective".
updated 1:43 AM EDT, Sat October 11, 2014
Despite tense relations, China benefits from Kim Jong Un's rule in North Korea. David McKenzie explains.
updated 4:51 AM EDT, Mon September 15, 2014
North Korea has "the world's most advantageous human rights system" and citizens have "priceless political integrity", the country declared.
updated 4:52 AM EDT, Mon September 1, 2014
Pro-wrestling, country clubs and theme parks are just some of the attractions North Korea wants you to see on a tightly controlled tour of the country.
ADVERTISEMENT