N Korean Nuclear Problem Should Be Priority for Trump Administration – CIA Chief

Sputnik News

09:25 05.01.2017(updated 09:26 05.01.2017)

CIA head John Brennan said the North Korean nuclear issue should be a high-priority problem for the Donald Trump administration.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The issue of North Korean ballistic missile and nuclear tests should become a major concern for the incoming US President-elect Donald Trump’s administration, US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director John Brennan said.

“I think the incoming administration needs to be very concerned about North Korea. They continue to advance their ballistic missile capability, and as Kim Jong-un said, even at the intercontinental ballistic range. They continue to develop their nuclear program in terms of having nuclear capability that they could then marry with a ballistic missile. And that would be a threat and is a threat to regional states, as well as potentially to the U.S. homeland,” Brennan said in an interview with the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), released on Wednesday.

The CIA chief stressed that the United States must closely work with China, which has a great deal of influence on North Korea, to resolve the challenge, noting that the country’s trajectory toward building up nuclear capability poses a threat to both its immediate region and to the United States.

“We shouldn’t feel comfortable with the continued military capabilities and the growth of those capabilities in North Korea. That needs to be addressed,” Brennan stressed.

North Korea has ramped up its nuclear program since change of leadership in 2011.

On September 5, Pyongyang launched three ballistic missiles in the direction of the Sea of Japan. Several days later it conducted a successful test of a nuclear warhead, which is believed to be the fifth and largest blast since Pyongyang began pursuing nuclear and ballistic missile programs. In the latest New Year’s address to the nation, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the country was finalizing preparations for another intercontinental ballistic missile test.

The UN Security Council imposed new sanctions against the North Korea in 2016 in response to nuclear test and missile launches. Japan, South Korea and the United States later introduced additional sanctions against the country.

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