Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)
March 2021 - North Korea Special Weapons News
- Trade Between North Korea and China Seen Likely to Resume in April Radio Free Asia 31 Mar 2021 -- After more than a year without trade between North Korea and China, who closed the Sino-Korean border to fight the coronavirus pandemic, there are signs that trade could resume in April, sources in China told RFA.
- North Korean Official Purged for Neglecting COVID-19 Quarantine Rules Radio Free Asia 31 Mar 2021 -- Authorities in North Korea have purged a local government official for allowing a coronavirus quarantine center to operate at reduced capacity at a time when Pyongyang is trying to maximize defenses against the deadly virus, sources in the country told RFA.
- Biden 'doesn't intend' to meet North Korea's Kim Jong-un as tensions simmer Press TV 30 Mar 2021 -- The odds of de-escalation between Washington and Pyongyang have further diminished after the White House said the US President Joe Biden does not intend to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
- North Korean Ore Trader's Death Highlights Pressures to Raise Cash for Pyongyang Radio Free Asia 30 Mar 2021 -- A North Korean trade representative in China tasked with bringing in a million U.S. dollars a year for the Pyongyang regime took his life when the coronavirus made raising the funds impossible, fellow traders in China told RFA.
- North Korea faults UNSC for 'double standard' over missile tests Press TV 29 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has slammed the UN Security Council (UNSC) for double standards and denying its right to self-defense after the body's sanctions committee censured Pyongyang's latest missile test as a violation of UN resolutions.
- N. Korea Slams 'Double Standard' UN Security Council's Stance on Pyongyang Missile Tests Sputnik 29 Mar 2021 -- The position of the UN Security Council (UNSC) on missile launches by Pyongyang is a manifestation of a policy of double standards that violates the Asian country's sovereignty and the right to self-defense, Jo Chol Su, a senior North Korean foreign ministry official, said on Monday.
- Double Standard Will Invite More Serious Consequence: Director-General of Department of International Organizations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of DPRK KCNA 29 Mar 2021 -- Jo Chol Su, director-general of the Department of International Organizations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK, released the following press statement on Sunday:
- Ri Pyong Chol Expresses Deep Concern over U.S. President's Statement Faulting DPRK's Regular Testfire KCNA 27 Mar 2021 -- Ri Pyong Chol, secretary of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), released the following statement on Friday:
- DPRK slams Washington for criticizing missile launches People's Daily 27 Mar 2021 -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) has launched two "newly-developed" tactical guided missiles, the official Korean Central News Agency reported Friday.
- North Korea blasts 'gangster-like logic' of US reaction to missile test Press TV 27 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has lashed out at US President Joe Biden over his comments on Pyongyang's recent test-launch of two ballistic missiles, calling the remarks "provocation" and "encroachment" on the country's right to self-defense.
- North Korean Official Describes Recent Missile Launches as Right for Self-Defence Sputnik 27 Mar 2021 -- North Korean senior official Ri Pyong Chol called the recent missile tests conducted by Pyongyang a right of a sovereign state for self-defence.
- North Korea Says US May Face 'Something Not Good' If Biden Echoes 'Thoughtless Remarks' From Presser Sputnik 27 Mar 2021 -- Earlier, US President Joe Biden remarked at his first major news conference that North Korea was a top foreign policy crisis for his administration, and that Washington would "respond accordingly" if Pyongyang continued to carry out missile tests. The tests came as a response to renewed regional military drills between the US and South Korea.
- Suing North Korea Presents Legal, Logistical Hurdles VOA 27 Mar 2021
- DPRK announces launch of "newly-developed" missiles People's Daily 26 Mar 2021 -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) has launched two "newly-developed" tactical guided missiles, the official Korean Central News Agency reported Friday.
- US warns of 'consequences' as North Korea confirms new missile test Press TV 26 Mar 2021 -- North Korea confirms it has tested a new guided missile that accurately hit the target off the eastern coast, in the first major weapons test this year, which prompted US President Joe Biden to threaten Pyongyang with "consequences."
- Academy of Defence Science Test-fires New-type Tactical Guided Projectile KCNA 26 Mar 2021 -- The Academy of Defence Science of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea test-fired newly developed new-type tactical guided projectile on Thursday.
- North Korean Survey Reveals More than 100 Deaths, 13,000 'Suspected' COVID-19 Cases in One Province Radio Free Asia 25 Mar 2021 -- A North Korean statistical survey of the nation has revealed more than 100 deaths and 13,000 "suspected" coronavirus cases in the northeastern province of North Hamgyong, undercutting the government's claim that the country remains totally "virus-free," sources in the province told RFA.
- North Korean Survey Reveals 13,000 'Suspected' COVID-19 Cases in North Hamgyong Province Radio Free Asia 25 Mar 2021 -- A North Korean statistical survey of the nation has revealed 13,000 "suspected" coronavirus cases in the northeastern province of North Hamgyong, further casting doubt on the government's claim that the country remains totally "virus-free," sources in the province told RFA.
- North Korea carries out ballistic missile launch: US, Japan Press TV 25 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has reportedly fired two missiles into the Sea of Japan, in what is the first signal to the new administration in the United States which is reviewing its policy towards Pyongyang.
- Photo: DPRK Announces it Test-Fired Two 'New Tactical Guided' Missiles Sputnik 25 Mar 2021 -- Earlier in the week, Japan, South Korea and the United States expressed concern over what they referred to as a test-fire of two ballistic missiles launched into the Sea of Japan by North Korea.
- North Korean Missile Launches Show Threat of Pyongyang's Arms Programme to Neighbours, US Says Sputnik 25 Mar 2021 -- The statement from the Pentagon comes after North Korea test-fired two ballistic missiles toward the Sea of Japan in the early hours of Thursday, sparking concern in South Korea and Japan.
- Six North Korean Soldiers Cross River Border to Escape to China Radio Free Asia 24 Mar 2021 -- A group of six North Korean soldiers guarding the Yalu River border with China abandoned their posts and escaped across the river early this month, sources in the North Korean military told RFA.
- North Korea denounces EU's 'psychotic way of thinking' after sanctions Press TV 24 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has denounced the European Union (EU)'s "psychotic way of thinking," following the imposition of sanctions by the bloc on its top officials over allegations of human rights violations.
- South Korean Military Says Pyongyang Fired Two Cruise Missiles on Sunday Sputnik 24 Mar 2021 -- South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) on Wednesday confirmed that North Korea had fired two cruise missiles off its west coast on Sunday.
- DPRK tests short-range system over the weekend: U.S. officials Global Times 24 Mar 2021 -- Senior U.S. administration officials said on Tuesday that the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) tested a short-range system over the weekend while downplaying the test as normal military activity.
- North Korea Conducts First Launch of 2021 VOA 23 Mar 2021 -- North Korea conducted a short-range projectile launch several days ago, according to U.S. officials, in what appears to be Pyongyang's first missile-related activity this year.
- DPRK Reportedly Fires Short-Range Missiles After Slamming US For Military Drills With S Korea Sputnik 23 Mar 2021 -- While the Biden administration has not yet rolled out a strategy for North Korea, saying that it is "reviewing" its approach to Pyongyang, the United States has recently renewed military exercises with South Korea - a move that quickly prompted criticism from the DPRK.
- Futile Act Will Incur Only Disgrace and Shame: Statement of Spokesperson for DPRK Foreign Ministry KCNA 23 Mar 2021 -- A spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) gave the following answer to a question put by KCNA on March 23 with respect to the designation on March 22 by the European Union of several countries including the DPRK as targets of "human rights sanctions" under the pretext of "countering global human rights violations."
- Petulant Pyongyang Ticks Off Putrajaya Radio Free Asia 23 Mar 2021 -- The Democratic People's Republic of North Korea announced last week through state media that it was severing diplomatic relations with Malaysia. The next day, Malaysia followed suit by giving North Korean diplomats and their dependents 48 hours to leave the Southeast Asian country.
- North Korean Diplomats Recalled from Malaysia May Face Punishment Over U.S. Extradition Radio Free Asia 23 Mar 2021 -- North Korean diplomats from Pyongyang's embassy who were recently expelled from Malaysia in a rupture of diplomatic relations could face punishment over the first-ever extradition of a North Korean national to the United States, sources in China told RFA.
- First North Korean National Brought to the United States to Stand Trial for Money Laundering Offenses US Dept. of Justice 22 Mar 2021 -- DPRK Intelligence Service Affiliated Businessman Accused of Using the U.S. Financial System and Deceiving U.S. Banks to Circumvent Sanctions Against North Korea
- After Landmark Extradition, North Korean in US Court on Money Laundering Charges Radio Free Asia 22 Mar 2021 -- The first North Korean national to be extradited to the United Statesâ€“a possible financial crime information windfall for the U.Sâ€“appeared in court to face money-laundering charges on Monday in Washington, where an FBI official said "we hope he will be the first of many."
- North Korean National Makes First Court Appearance in Money Laundering Case VOA 22 Mar 2021 -- Mun Chol Myong, a North Korean national, made his first appearance Monday in federal court in the District of Columbia to face money laundering charges.
- Xi says China ready to work with DPRK to preserve peace on Korean Peninsula Global Times 22 Mar 2021 -- Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, has said that China is willing to work with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and other related parties to uphold the political settlement of the Korean Peninsula issue and preserve peace and stability on the peninsula, so as to make new contributions to regional peace, stability, development and prosperity.
- Malaysia says all DPRK diplomats expelled as ties severed People's Daily 22 Mar 2021 -- The Malaysian government on Sunday expelled all diplomats of the embassy of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) here in response to the latter's decision to sever diplomatic ties.
- Expelled North Korean Diplomats Leave Malaysia Radio Free Asia 21 Mar 2021 -- North Korean embassy officials and their families left Malaysia on Sunday after Pyongyang severed decades-old diplomatic ties following the extradition of a North Korean national to the United States to face criminal trial.
- Malaysia says "deeply regrets" DPRK's decision to sever diplomatic ties People's Daily 20 Mar 2021 -- Malaysia "deeply regrets" the decision of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to sever their diplomatic ties, the Malaysian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Friday in a statement.
- Pentagon chief: US 'ready to fight tonight' with North Korea Press TV 19 Mar 2021 -- Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin has threatene North Korea with a war after Pyongyang denounced the resumption of drills between the US and South Korea.
- North Korea cuts ties with Malaysia over extradition of citizen to US Press TV 19 Mar 2021 -- Pyongyang has cut diplomatic ties with Malaysia, responding to a "nefarious" court ruling allowing the extradition of a North Korean citizen to the US.
- Malaysia, North Korea Ties Snap After North Korean Extradited to US Radio Free Asia 19 Mar 2021 -- Malaysia ordered its embassy in Pyongyang closed on Friday in a tit-for-tat escalation after North Korea severed diplomatic ties with Kuala Lumpur over the extradition of a North Korean man to the United States to face money-laundering charges.
- Unfairness Would Not Escape from Stern Judgment of Fairness: DPRK Ministry of Foreign Affairs KCNA 19 Mar 2021 -- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) issued the following statement on Friday:
- North Korean Workers in China Hit With Demand for 'Loyalty Funds' for Late Leader's Birth Anniversary Radio Free Asia 18 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has ordered trade workers dispatched to China to pay "loyalty funds" ahead of a major national holiday, but few are able to pay because their work dried up when both countries closed the border early last year to combat the spread of coronavirus, sources familiar with trade issues told RFA.
- N.Korea stresses no intention to hold talks Global Times 18 Mar 2021 -- A top diplomat of North Korea has vowed that Pyongyang will ignore the US' outreach until Washington "rolls back its hostile policy," the official Korean Central News Agency reported on Thursday.
- Statement of First Vice Foreign Minister of DPRK KCNA 18 Mar 2021 -- Choe Son Hui, first vice minister of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), issued the following statement on Wednesday:
- DPRK's History of Self-reliance (1) KCNA 18 Mar 2021 -- Self-reliance is a proud tradition of the Korean revolution.
- North Korea rules out new talks with US, citing 'hostile policy' Press TV 18 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has dismissed the possibility of holding fresh talks with the United States on the demilitarization of the Korean Peninsula, saying it will ignore all efforts by Washington to foster contact or dialog as long as it pursues a "hostile policy" toward Pyongyang.
- Blinken Urges China to Pressure Pyongyang to Denuclearise in 'Self-Interest' Sputnik 18 Mar 2021 -- The US has reaffirmed its commitment to the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula and reducing the threat posed by North Korea, and urged China to pressure Pyongyang in "clear self-interest" and using their "unique relationship", US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Thursday following "two plus two" talks in Seoul.
- Emergency Anti-epidemic Work Gets Brisk Together with Clean-up in DPRK KCNA 17 Mar 2021 -- The anti-epidemic atmosphere is growing stronger in the DPRK.
- North Korea Tries Familiar Gambit as US Delegation Arrives in Region Radio Free Asia 17 Mar 2021 -- North Korea's first statement to the Biden Administration, a string of crude-yet-colorful threats from leader Kim Jong Un's powerful sister, were shrugged off by the top U.S. diplomat as he arrived in Asia, but analysts said they could point to new missile tests or other attention-getting moves by Pyongyang.
- North Korea May Test Advanced ICBM 'in the Near Future', US General Claims Sputnik 17 Mar 2021 -- Last year, during talks between Washington and Pyongyang on denuclearising the Korean Peninsula, Kim Jong-un said North Korea would not implement a ban on nuclear testing until the US offered some concessions. The said talks have been stalled for some time.
- White House confirms having reached out to DPRK People's Daily 16 Mar 2021 -- The White House confirmed on Monday that the administration of President Joe Biden has recently reached out to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) but has not yet received a response from Pyongyang.
- North Korean leader's sister warns US against 'causing a stink' Press TV 16 Mar 2021 -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's influential sister has warned the administration of US President Joe Biden against "causing a stink at its first step," as senior American officials are in the region for visits.
- North Korea Warns US as Top Defense, Foreign Policy Officials Hold Talks VOA 16 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has broken its silence and issued a new warning toward the United States as top American and Japanese foreign policy and defense officials condemn China's aggression in the region.
- DPRK condemns U.S.-S. Korea military drills People's Daily 16 Mar 2021 -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Monday slammed the ongoing military exercises jointly held by South Korea and the United States, and warned of possible retaliation, the official Korean Central News Agency reported on Tuesday.
- North Korean Companies Hoard Rare-Earth Elements for Future Trade with China Radio Free Asia 16 Mar 2021 -- North Korean state-run companies have begun hoarding molybdenum ore, causing the price of the high-tech industrial input to spike in a move that suggests that trade with China could resume soon, sources in the country told RFA.
- North Korea Gives Control of State-Run Companies to Local Government Officials Radio Free Asia 15 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has ordered local officials to take a more active role in managing state-run companies, but company managers complain that the increased oversight will make production goals harder to reach, sources in the country told RFA.
- White House Confirms Reports on Biden Administration's Failed Attempts to Contact Pyongyang Sputnik 15 Mar 2021 -- The Biden administration has reached out to North Korea but no response has been received to date, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Monday.
- Increased Electricity Production Witnessed in DPRK KCNA 15 Mar 2021 -- Power stations in the DPRK are boosting the output.
- North Korea unresponsive to Biden admin's diplomatic outreach: Report Press TV 14 Mar 2021 -- North Korea has been unresponsive to behind-the-scenes diplomatic outreach since mid-February by US President Joe Biden's administration, according to a senior US official.
- North Korea Has Reportedly Not Yet Responded to Biden Administration Despite US 'Reaching Out' Sputnik 13 Mar 2021 -- During his presidential campaign, Joe Biden labeled the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un a "thug" and said he would not agree to meet with him unless Pyongyang moves to have its nuclear arsenal reduced.
- UN Rights Official Warns of Starvation, Poverty in North Korea From Long COVID-19 Lockdown Radio Free Asia 12 Mar 2021 -- North Koreans are starving to death, with children and elderly resorting to begging in the streets or risking execution by breaking laws to obtain food from China, a new report by the UN Special Rapporteur on North Korean Human Rights says, calling for the country to face international justice for mistreating its population.
- North Korean Youth Find Ways to Dodge Military Service Radio Free Asia 11 Mar 2021 -- More and more North Korean youth are dodging mandatory military service, because ruling party membership and all its perks are no longer as automatic for those who finish lengthy stints in the armed forces, sources in the country told RFA.
- COVID contributed to 'starvation', executions in DPR Korea, Rights Council hears UN News 10 Mar 2021 -- Disturbing reports have emerged from North Korea - officially known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) - that people have starved or been executed because of COVID-19 restrictions, a leading rights expert said on Wednesday.
- North Korea to Begin COVID-19 Vaccinations VOA 10 Mar 2021 -- North Korea will receive nearly two-million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine through the World Health Organization's COVAX program. Despite the country's limited resources, some medical professionals are confident that the North's doctors can successfully carry-out a vaccination campaign. But, human rights advocates say Pyongyang's yearlong border closure has caused a humanitarian disaster.
- North Korean Loses Last Appeal to Block Extradition to US from Malaysia Radio Free Asia 09 Mar 2021 -- A North Korean businessman in Malaysia on Tuesday lost his third and final attempt in the courts against being extradited to the United States to face money laundering charges, which stem from alleged violations of Washington's sanctions on Pyongyang.
- International Women's Day Causes North Korean Women to Question Society Radio Free Asia 08 Mar 2021 -- Yearly celebrations of International Women's Day in North Korea are awakening women to the concept of women's rights, some to the point where they question the legitimacy of North Korean society itself, sources told RFA.
- Seoul Urges Pyongyang to Have 'Wise' Reaction to US-S. Korea Military Drill, Ministry Says Sputnik 08 Mar 2021 -- South Korea hopes that North Korea will demonstrate a wise and flexible attitude toward Seoul's joint military exercises with the United States, which begins on Monday in the format of computer-simulated combined command post-training, the country's unification ministry said.
- Stricter Anti-Epidemic Measures Taken in DPRK KCNA 07 Mar 2021 -- The campaign for thoroughly preventing the inroads of COVID-19 through strict observation of the state anti-epidemic rules is getting brisk in the DPRK.
- Early Signals to North Korea Seen as Key to Keeping Door Open to Diplomacy VOA 07 Mar 2021 -- Experts are urging the Biden administration to send an early signal to North Korea, conveying its interest in keeping diplomacy open even as Washington conducts policy reviews on how to deal with the regime so that it can gauge Pyongyang's response for possible talks.
- Chinese Police Arrest North Korean Trade Workers for Illegal Gambling Radio Free Asia 05 Mar 2021 -- Police in a Chinese city on the border with North Korea have arrested 10 North Korean trade workers for gambling in illegal mahjong dens, sources in China told RFA.
- North Korean Military Exploits Pandemic to Cash-in on Face Masks Radio Free Asia 03 Mar 2021 -- North Korean companies affiliated with the country's military are exploiting nationwide coronavirus emergency protocols to cash in on face mask production, sources in the country told RFA.
- North Korea Conceals Suspected Nuclear Warehouse, Alleged Satellite Photos Suggest Sputnik 02 Mar 2021 -- The previous US administration attempted to negotiate the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula, but the talks stalled before the sides could reach any agreement.
- North Korean Quarantine Police Shake Down Residents for Bribes and Food Radio Free Asia 01 Mar 2021 -- North Korean quarantine enforcers are using their authority during coronavirus prevention inspections to extract bribes and food out of citizens struggling to survive under an economy devastated by the pandemic, sources in the country told RFA.
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