North Korea plans to ‘deal a blow’ to Biden – Seoul’s ex-spy chief — Analysis

Pyongyang wants to carry out a nuclear missile test in the run-up to the US midterm elections, South Korea’s former top spy has claimed

Pyongyang will time its next nuclear missile test to come ahead of the upcoming US midterm elections, Park Jie-won, the former head of South Korea’s National Intelligence Service (NIS), has claimed.

“They are going to do it in order to demonstrate a threat that [their] missile can fly to the US, carrying a miniaturized and lighter warhead, and to deal a blow to the Joe Biden administration ahead of the midterm election,”Park spoke on Monday about his leadership of the NIS from 2020 to May 2022.

Park added “there will be some kind of North Korean provocations during the US-South Korea military exercises that start today.” 

“Kim Jong-un is not going to overlook it as if nothing happened,”He stated.

On Monday, the US and South Korea began an 11-day Ulchi Freedom Shield Field Exercise. Pyongyang regularly protests these joint drills that it regards as a security risk.

US and South Korea launch major war games

Moscow also warns of an escalation. “Washington is prepared to deploy strategic forces near the Korean Peninsula if the North Koreans conduct a new nuclear weapons test,” Russia’s Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev said, adding that it would “lead to a further degradation of the situation in the region.” 

According to the South Korean Defense Ministry, Pyongyang fired two cruise missiles from the West Coast of North Korea on Wednesday. This was Pyongyang’s first test of such weapons in over two months. North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un said late last month that the country was ready to “mobilize”Its nuclear arsenal is ready for any possible clashes with South Korea and the US.

Ned Price of the US State Department told journalists on Wednesday that Washington would work with Japan and South Korea in order to guarantee that Pyongyang remains free from all sanctions. “held accountable for its continued provocations.” 

In 2019, talks between North Korea and the USA on denuclearization have stalled.

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