Though the precise strength of the blast has yet to be determined, South Korea’s weather agency said the artificial quake it caused was five to six times stronger than tremors generated by Pyongyang’s previous tests.
Experts say Kim wants a real nuclear deterrent against the United States to ensure the survival of his government and probably believes that it will strengthen his negotiating position when North Korea returns to talks.
The Ministry of foreign Affairs of China said that Pyongyang conducted a nuclear test, despite the overwhelming opinion of the global community.
“North Korea has conducted a major Nuclear Test”.
The announcement came after the Prime Minster sat in on a National Security Council briefing by Japanese officials – becoming just the second foreign leader to be given the privilege.
“I would expect a measured response from the Chinese showing their displeasure”, Kovrig said.
North Korea’s nuclear and missile program has made huge strides since Kim rose to power following his father’s death in late 2011.
“Sharing the view that South Korea needs to bolster its defense capabilities to counter North Korea’s provocations and threats, the two leaders agreed in principle to revise the missile guidelines to a level that the South Korean side desires”, the spokesman’s statement said.
The International Atomic Energy Agency, which has no access to North Korea, called the nuclear test, Pyongyang’s test is “an extremely regrettable act” that is “in complete disregard of the repeated demands of the international community”.
The United Nations has condemned North Korea’s “outrageous” firing of a missile over Japan, demanding that the isolated country cease its weapons programme, but held back on any threat of new sanctions.
Hydrogen or H-bombs, also known as thermonuclear weapons, work on fusion and are far more powerful, with a nuclear blast taking place first to create the intense temperatures required.
North Korea on Tuesday launched its 22nd missile this year, the most it has fired since it started building its own projectiles in 1984. It said the underground test site did not leak radioactive materials, which would make such a determination even harder.
Pictures showed Kim in black suit examining a metal casing, with a shape akin to a peanut shell.
The detonation produced 10 times more power than the fifth nuclear test a year ago, South Korean and Japanese officials said.
North Korea sharply raised regional tension this week with the launch of its Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile that flew over Japan and landed in the Pacific.
North Korea further raised regional tensions on Tuesday by launching an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan, drawing worldwide condemnation.
Japan confirmed that North Korea conducted a nuclear test, Foreign Minister Taro Kono said.
The two leaders are expected to discuss the possibility of further sanctions on North Korea, May’s office said.
North and South Korea remain technically at-war as no peace treaty was signed at the end of the Korean War in 1953.