USA bombers train with Japan, South Korea after nuclear test

Top nuclear envoys from South Korea and the United States have agreed to seek the strongest possible sanctions for the DPRK over its latest nuclear test. North Korea is capable of detonating another nuclear device anytime at one of its unused tunne.

South Korea said yesterday the North is ready to conduct an additional nuclear test at any time.

"The cause and crux of the Korean nuclear issue rest with the USA rather than China".

Washington and Seoul insisted on sanctions as the only option until North Korea agreed to return to the negotiating table with a commitment to abandoning nuclear weapons.

South Korea's Defence Ministry says it's only a matter of time before the DPRK carries out a sixth nuclear test.

North Korea through conducting this test went against the United Nations sanctions that were tightened in March.

The United States flew two B-1 bombers over South Korea yesterday in a show of force against North Korea's latest and most powerful nuclear test last week, while the Obama administration pushes to impose new sanctions on the defiant state.

The two Koreas remain technically at war after their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, rather than a peace treaty. "The core of the issue is the conflict between the [North Korea] and the US", she said.

South Korea is home to around 28,500 USA troops and numerous bases.

Out of all US nuclear-capable bombers, the B1-B can carry the largest payload.

To foil the North's plans, said US -based Korea expert Jonathan Pollack of the Brookings Institution, the world must move fast in assessing its weapons capabilities, what it could achieve in the long run and the most practicable means of defending the countries under threat.

This all leaves the next USA president with two imperfect options in dealing with North Korea's evolving nuclear capabilities: détente or deterrence. It can carry 61 tons of weaponry, including 24 nuclear bombs, 24 joint direct attack munitions (JDAM), 84 conventional bombs, 24 air-to-surface missiles, and 8 cruise missiles.

But KCNA tied together the nation's challenges with the pride of the North's recent fifth ever nuclear test, and insisted that "the world will witness a new history in which misfortune is turned into favorable conditions".

"These extremely reckless provocations of the USA imperialist warmongers are pushing the situation on the Korean peninsula to the point of explosion hour by hour", the state-run KCNA news agency said.

But nuclear researcher Siegfried Hecker, who has visited North Korea's nuclear facilities in the past, wrote on the 38 North website that the communist state may have sufficient fissile material to have about 20 bombs by the end of this year and add seven more per year.

Both Kims were on the same page that reintroducing nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula for defensive means is not considered an option right now, and rather stressed the importance of deploying the US missile defense system THAAD to South Korea.

In January, the U.S. flew a B-52 Stratofortress strategic bomber over Osan Air Base after North Korea's fourth nuclear blast.

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