Westmoreland Condemns North Korean Nuclear Weapon Test
By Rep. Lynn Westmoreland
February 12, 2013
Seismic activity within North Korea detected early this morning was followed quickly by an announcement by the country that they had conducted their third test of a nuclear device. The seismic activity was centered around the same location where North Korea conducted tests in 2006 and 2009, and the organization that monitors the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty said the seismic activity had “clear explosion-like characteristics.” It is unclear whether the test was with plutonium or with enriched uranium, but either way today’s actions demonstrate loudly and clearly that the United States and the United Nations are not doing nearly enough to deter North Korea’s continued nuclear research. This rogue and dangerous nation could soon be able to pair their growing nuclear technology with a long-range missile to threaten the United States.
In order to truly defeat North Korea’s nuclear possibilities, we must get North Korea’s biggest (and often only) ally, China, to join the rest of the world in condemning their actions and to fully comply with the sanctions imposed by the United Nations. To date, China has refused to participate in the sanctions, continuing to provide much-needed oil and aid to the country. However, North Korea’s actions today were a direct act of defiance against China who had asked the country’s new leader, Kim Jong-un, not to set off another weapon. So perhaps today’s test will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back, so to speak, and will encourage China to join the rest of the world in enforcing the strict sanctions imposed by the United Nations.
I join members of the Intelligence Committee, members on both sides of the aisle in Washington as well as people around the world in condemning these actions of North Korea. As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, I want to assure you that I will monitor this situation carefully.