Report: Having nuclear weapons ‘matter of life & death’ for North Korea

North Korean senior official said the United States would “have to put up” with North Korea’s nuclear status,

FILE: North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un being briefed during an atmospheric re-entry environment simulation of a locally manufactured heat-resistant section of a ballistic missile warhead part at an undisclosed location in North Korea. Picture: AFP.

MOSCOW - Pyongyang does not plan to hold any talks with Washington about its nuclear programme, a senior North Korean diplomat said on Friday, adding that possessing nuclear weapons was a matter of life and death for North Korea, the RIA news agency reported.

The United States would “have to put up” with North Korea’s nuclear status, Choe Son-hui, director-general of the North American department of North Korea’s foreign ministry, told a non-proliferation conference in Moscow, RIA reported.

“This is a matter of life and death for us. The current situation deepens our understanding that we need nuclear weapons to repel a potential attack.”

“We will respond to fire with fire.”