News / Asia

N. Korea's Kim Calls for More Weapons, End to Confrontation

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un delivers a New Year address in Pyongyang in this picture released by the North's official KCNA news agency, January 1, 2013.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un delivers a New Year address in Pyongyang in this picture released by the North's official KCNA news agency, January 1, 2013.
VOA News
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has used a New Year speech to call for the development of more advanced weapons, as well as an "end to confrontation" on the Korean peninsula.

In the surprise address broadcast Tuesday on state television, Kim called on his country to hold fast "to the ideals of independence, peace and friendship."

"This year, the entire Korean nation should turn out in a nationwide patriotic struggle for reunification in unity so as to usher in a new phase in the reunification movement," he said. "An important issue in putting an end to the division of the country and achieving reunification is to remove confrontation between the north and the south."

Kim, whose government provoked international condemnation by carrying out a successful long-range rocket launch in December, also called for the development of more "cutting edge arms and equipment."

The speech was the first televised New Year address by a North Korean leader in 19 years. During the leadership of Kim's late father, Kim Jong Il, the New Year message was delivered in the form of a state media editorial.

Kim's speech also called for an improvement in living standards in the impoverished communist country. He said bolstering farming would "provide the people with a better, more bountiful diet."

"Becoming an economic power is the most important task in our efforts to follow our great work of establishing a strong communist country," he said.

But he made no mention of his country's nuclear weapons program, which has landed in the country under devastating international sanctions.

Inter-Korean tensions were raised in December when North Korea launched a long-range rocket that successfully placed what Pyongyang said was a weather satellite into orbit.

The move was condemned by the United Nations Security Council as a violation of sanctions banning it from conducting long-range ballistic missile tests.

Following the launch, some analysts fear North Korea may be preparing a third nuclear test.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: avlisk from: USA
January 01, 2013 9:12 AM
Dear Mr. Kim. You have a wide-open possibility to bring peace and progress and prosperity to Korea and the world. Figure out how to do this without guns and bombs, and you will take your place in history alongside Jesus and Gandhi. Go for it, Mr. Kim, and I wish you all the best towards this end.


by: James from: Nebraska
January 01, 2013 7:01 AM
Kim Jong-Un plagiarising the National Rifle Association. Or perhaps he is already a member. They believe more weapons will lead to less confrontation too.


by: Georges from: Liverpool
January 01, 2013 6:30 AM
At last....maybe a sign for a better future in the region...if it works it would boost the regions economy and help all.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid