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NUKEWARS
S. Korea leader says North may stage multiple nuke tests
by Staff Writers
Seoul (AFP) Feb 5, 2013


N. Korea video shows US city under attack
Seoul (AFP) Feb 5, 2013 - North Korea, poised to conduct a nuclear test any day now, has posted a video on YouTube depicting a US city resembling New York engulfed in flames after an apparent missile attack.

The footage was uploaded Saturday by the North's official website, Uriminzokkiri, which distributes news and propaganda from the state media.

The video is shot as a dream sequence, with a young man seeing himself on board a North Korean space shuttle launched into orbit by the same type of rocket Pyongyang successfully tested in December.

As the shuttle circles the globe -- to the tune of "We Are the World" -- the video zooms in on countries below, including a joyfully re-unified Korea.

In contrast, the focus then switches to a city -- shrouded in the US flag -- under apparent missile attack with its skyscrapers, including what appears to be the Empire State Building, either on fire or in ruins.

"Somewhere in the United States, black clouds of smoke are billowing," runs the caption across the screen.

"It seems that the nest of wickedness is ablaze with the fire started by itself," it added.

The video ends with the young man concluding that his dream will "surely come true".

"Despite all kinds of attempts by imperialists to isolate and crush us... never will anyone be able to stop the people marching toward a final victory," it said.

The North is expected to conduct its nuclear test as a defiant response to UN sanctions imposed after its December rocket launch.

South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak believes North Korea could detonate multiple devices when it goes ahead with a nuclear test expected in the coming weeks or even days.

In an interview published Tuesday in the Chosun Ilbo daily, the outgoing president also acknowledged the huge challenge the international community faces in seeking to wean Pyongyang off its nuclear weapons programme.

The North has signalled that it will carry out a "higher level" nuclear test very soon, in a defiant response to tightened UN sanctions after its successful long-range rocket launch in December.

Lee said "higher-level" suggested Pyongyang might attempt to detonate several devices.

"North Korea is likely to carry out multiple nuclear tests at two places or more simultaneously" to maximise scientific gains from an event that will be globally condemned, Lee said.

Experts around the world are gearing up to analyse any test for what it might reveal about the current status of the North's weaponisation programme.

Of particular interest will be any sign that its scientists have succeeded in developing a warhead that can be fitted onto a missile.

"If the North produces miniaturised weapons that can be used as warheads on missiles, it would really pose a threat," Lee said. "That's why the whole world is watching it so intensively."

Lee has only a few weeks left in office at the end of a five-year term marked by an almost total freeze of contacts between North and South Korea.

In his interview, he suggested that diplomatic efforts would make little headway in bringing about a significant policy shift in Pyongyang.

"I think it is difficult to persuade the North regime to give up the nuclear path," he said.

Some predict the test will come before the Lunar New Year on February 10, while others suggest it will be timed to coincide with the February 16 birthday of late leader Kim Jong-Il, father of current leader Kim Jong-Un.

South Korea and its ally the United States are holding a joint naval exercise off the Korean peninsula as tensions rise -- a drill condemned as a "warmongering" exercise by North Korea.

Its official news agency Tuesday threatened a move going "beyond the imagination" of Seoul and Washington in response to the exercise, which it terms a rehearsal for invasion.

"The US is now getting hell-bent on the joint anti-submarine drill targeting the 'north's nuclear facilities'," the agency said in an editorial.

"Now that the hostile acts toward the (North) have gone beyond the limit of universally accepted... norms of the international community, the (North's) option in reaction to it will also go beyond the imagination of the hostile forces," it said.

"There is no other option for the (North) but to fight it out."

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