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N. Korea enhances nuclear readiness ahead of military’s summer exercises

The North Korean military has ordered units to review nuclear weapons maintenance and nuclear command and control and conduct related drills ahead of the summer exercises starting in July, Daily NK has learned.

Amid predictions that military aid from Russia will accelerate North Korea’s nuclear weapons development, there are signs that North Korea is working to improve its ability to operate nuclear weapons in the field.

“The government’s Nuclear Weapons Supervisory Command had its Military Strategy and Analysis Department cable orders to the main missile and artillery units to conduct joint maneuvers to more effectively manage the state’s nuclear arsenal, clarify the chain of command and achieve technical consistency,” a source in the North Korean military told Daily NK on Wednesday.

According to the source, these orders are focused on reviewing the “nuclear trigger,” a comprehensive nuclear weapons control apparatus developed as a key element for conducting nuclear war, during the summer drills.

“The point of these drills is to check whether low-level units are technically capable of operating the launchers if the Nuclear Weapons Supervisory Command were to issue a nuclear counterattack order and to train military specialists in the operation of nuclear weapons,” the source explained.

Some military commanders believe that improving the practical ability of specialists to operate nuclear weapons is extremely important, the source added.

“Another purpose of these drills is to remind soldiers that North Korea, as a responsible nuclear weapons state, is capable of fully supervising and controlling its nuclear forces and that it’s a nuclear power ready to launch a nuclear counterattack at any time,” the source explained.

“In light of recent circumstances, there seems to be a constant emphasis on the importance of safely managing our nuclear arsenal and maintaining nuclear war readiness,” the source said.

These movements within North Korea are also believed to have the strategic goal of maximizing the North’s leverage as a nuclear weapons state based on cooperation with Russia, with which it has formed a “comprehensive strategic partnership.”

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June 28, 2024 at 07:16AM

by DailyNK(North Korean Media)

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