Assessing North Korea’s Nuclear Capabilities
Dr James Hoare, Research Associate, Centre of Korean Studies, SOAS
Dr Patricia Lewis, Research Director, International Security, Chatham House
Chair: John Nilsson-Wright, Senior Research Fellow for Northeast Asia, Asia Programme, Chatham House
North Korea has recently conducted its fifth nuclear test and is now thought to have a stockpile of around 20 devices. The size of the resulting earthquakes from the country's test site have increased, indicating that the devices are becoming increasingly more powerful. As a result, its nuclear weapons and missile programmes have come under further international scrutiny.
Our panel will analyse whether the latest nuclear test is a game changer in terms of how North Korea’s neighbours and the wider international community view the country’s nuclear ambitions. Given the tightening of sanctions at the start of 2016 and the subsequent escalation of tests and launches, what options remain to reduce tensions between North Korea and the international community? Are sanctions enough to deter North Korea's nuclear ambitions? And do the US, China and the UN need to develop a clearer, more cohesive strategy towards Pyongyang?
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