North Korea's Hydrogen Bomb Test an Example of Global Nuclear Proliferation

© AFP 2023 / JUNG YEON-JEPeople watch a news report on North Korea's first hydrogen bomb test at a railroad station in Seoul on January 6, 2016.
People watch a news report on North Korea's first hydrogen bomb test at a railroad station in Seoul on January 6, 2016. - Sputnik International
North Korea’s hydrogen bomb test is an example of continuing nuclear proliferation in the world, highlighting the need for talks on abolition of nuclear weapons, experts told Sputnik.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, Pyongyang reportedly carried out the first test of a hydrogen bomb. The international community has condemned the test as provocative, and undermining stability in the region.

"The only way to ensure that a nuclear holocaust never happens is for <…> complete abolition" of nuclear weapons, Frank Jackson, a former co-chair at the World Disarmament Campaign, said.

According to Jackson, the permanent members of the UN Security Council are committed by the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to hold talks on abolishing those arms.

A sales assistant watches TV sets broadcasting a news report on North Korea's nuclear test, in Seoul, January 6, 2016 - Sputnik International
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"This treaty has been in force since 1970, yet there have never been such negotiations. The latest example of proliferation, the North Korea test, simply reinforces the need for the P5 to fulfil their obligations," Jackson stressed.

The national leader to lead those talks to a successful conclusion "would go down in history as the greatest statesman/stateswoman," Jackson added, wondering whether Russian President Vladimir Putin would be the one to do so.

"The test is bad example of nuclear proliferation in the world <…> It was a provocation," Li Bin, a Senior Associate, Nuclear Policy Program & Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said.

Bin believes that the international community "should consider serious responses to the test," while Jackson stresses that abolition of nuclear weapons "would be far more effective than more sanctions on North Korea."

North Korea declared itself a nuclear power in 2005 and conducted nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and 2013, having earlier withdrawn from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that it ratified in 1985.

The United States, Japan and South Korea, as well as Russia and China, took part in talks on denuclearization of the Korean peninsula with North Korea from 2003 until 2009, when Pyongyang withdrew from the talks.

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