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According to North Korea, the recent barrage of missile launches was a “simulation” of a nuclear strike on the South.

North Korea: It occurs at a time when intelligence reports suggest North Korea is getting ready to conduct its first nuclear test in five years. Pyongyang has fired seven sets of missiles in recent weeks in retaliation for US and South Korean military exercises.

The missiles were allegedly built to carry nuclear warheads, according to comprehensive allegations released by official media on Monday.

They said that the military had practiced inserting tactical nuclear warheads—small, close-range nukes designed for use in the battlefield—into the missiles. The launches, they claimed, were a warning to the US and South Korea.

They also asserted that they had successfully simulated hitting South Korea’s military bases, ports, and airports. Kim Jong-un was pictured supervising and “leading” the tests by the state news agency KNCA.

Intelligence officials from the US and South Korea have said that the North may soon conduct its first nuclear weapon test since 2017. It might also take advantage of the opportunity to launch a smaller tactical device, the kind that would fit into the missiles it has been testing, for the first time, according to experts.

North Korea: The missile launches were "nuclear attack simulations."

North Korea updated its nuclear regulations this month, broadening the spectrum of situations in which it could use nuclear weapons. North Korea, according to Mr. Kim, is a “irreversible” nuclear power.

It has also significantly increased the frequency of its missile firings this year, launching over 40 missiles so far this year, which is a record-breaking number. The majority of the recent launches have been short-range missiles that have landed in between North Korea and Japan.

North Korea’s recent launches:

  • Sunday 25 September: A short-range missile fired the day after a US naval carrier arrived in waters around the Korean peninsula. 600km distance/60km altitude
  • Wednesday 28 September: Two short-range missiles fired on the eve of US Vice President Kamala Harris’ visit to Seoul and the DMZ. 360km distance/30km altitude
  • Thursday 29 September: Two short-range missiles after Harris departed South Korea. 300km distance/50km altitude
  • Saturday 1 October: Two short-range missiles fired amid continuing US-South Korea-Japan drills. 400km distance/50km altitude
  • Tuesday 4 October: An intermediate-range ballistic missile fired over Japan. 4,500km distance/2,800km altitude
  • Thursday 6 October: Two short-range missiles fired. 800km distance/50km altitude
  • Sunday 9 October: Two more short-range missiles

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