North Korean diplomat threatens South Korean destruction at U.N.
North Korean diplomat Jon Yong Ryong said that Pyongyang is prepared to take further steps after its recently completed underground nuclear test. South Korea, France, Germany and Britain all condemned Jon's comments. Britain's ambassador said that the language was inappropriate and that the discussion with North Korea is headed in the wrong direction, according to Reuters.
"As the saying goes, a new-born puppy knows no fear of a tiger. South Korea's erratic behavior would only herald its final destruction," Jon said, Reuters reports.
Spanish Ambassador Javier Gil Catalina said that he was left stupefied by the comments, which appeared to be in violation of international law.
"In the 30 years of my career I've never heard anything like it and it seems to me that we are not speaking about something that is even admissible, we are speaking about a threat of the use of force that is prohibited by Article 2.4 of the UN charter," Catalina said, Reuters reports.
Outside of the United Nations, South Korea has warned that it could strike its northern neighbor if it believed an attack was imminent.
North Korea has said repeatedly that it conducted the test as part of measures to bolster its defenses in response to U.S. hostility. The United States has led a push to impose harsher sanctions on North Korea.
"Our current nuclear test is the primary countermeasure taken by the DPRK in which it exercised its maximum self-restraint," Jon said, Gulf-Times reports. "If the U.S. takes a hostile approach toward the DPRK to the last, rendering the situation complicated, it (North Korea) will be left with no option but to take the second and third stronger steps in succession."
Jon did not elaborate on what those steps might be.