Taarifa Rwanda

Editor’s Pick: BBC’s Rough Talk With North Korea

North Korea Vice Foreign Minister Han Song-Ryol has told the BBC that his country will test missiles every week.

This comes at a time when North Korea and the US are spewing war threats at each other.

“We’ll be conducting more missile tests on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis,” he told the BBC on Monday, adding an “all-out war” will occur if the U.S. attacks.

“North Korea would do well not to test his resolve or the strength of the armed forces of the United States in this region,” Vice President Mike Pence told Reuters.

Kim Song Gyong, head of the North Korean Foreign Ministry’s European Department, told Reuters if the U.S. makes “the slightest movement” toward a nuclear strike on his country, they would preemptively attack and “destroy the aggressors without any mercy.”

We captured part of BBC Correspondent John Sudworth’s interview with North Korea Vice-Foreign Minister Han Song-ryol about President Donald Trump’s threats that the US will attack North Korea over using nuclear weapons.

Below is part of their conversation.

Minister Han Song-ryol: If the United States is reckless enough to use military means, it would mean from that very day an all out war. Our nuclear weapons protect us from that threat. We will be conducting more missile tests on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis.

John Sudworth: If you could send one message to Donald Trump today what would it be?

Minister Han Song-ryol: I would tell him that if the United States encroaches on our sovereignty then it will provoke immediate counter-reaction. If the USA is planning a military attack against us, we will react with a nuclear pre-emptive strike by our own style and method.

John Sudworth: Rather than developing nuclear weapons, wouldn’t North Korea be better focusing on reforms here at home, for example, closing the system of political prison camps in which tens of thousands of people are known to be kept for even the most limited of opposition and dissent?

Minister Han Song-ryol: We don’t tolerate any others criticising our style of socialism. And we believe in the choice we have made. And for the so-called political prison camps, it is something that our enemies have fabricated and disseminated through their followers in order to demonise our country. We do not have the kind of shooting sprees like in other countries; armed men will start shooting people. You also live in a certain country and a certain system. If people force you to adopt another country’s way of life, you will also go against that.


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