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"We condemen this latest nuclear test in the strongest possible terms"

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Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron on North Korea "We condemen this latest nuclear test in the strongest possible terms"

Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron agree that the international community must provide a resolute, coherent united response to North Korea’s latest escalation. The German government has summoned North Korea’s Ambassador to the Federal Foreign Office.

2 min reading time

On the basis of the information available, the German government assumes that a hydrogen bomb was tested – a significantly more powerful bomb than that tested in January 2016, reported federal government spokesperson Steffen Seibert on Monday at the government press conference. He added, "North Korea has thus wilfully taken another step up the ladder of escalation."

A Federal Foreign Office speaker announced that North Korea’s Ambassador would be summoned to the Federal Foreign Office the same day to hear the German government’s position.

A new dimension in the escalation

Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron condemned North Korea’s most recent nuclear test on Sunday (3 September) in the strongest possible terms. "This latest provocation of the leader in Pyongyang has reached a new dimension," they announced following a telephone conversation.

They agreed that North Korea is trampling international law and that the international community must thus achieve a resolute and unified response. "Alongside the United Nations Security Council, the European Union must act," said the Chancellor and the President. In this context they also advocated tightening the EU’s sanctions on North Korea.

Flagrant breach of international law

Federal Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel declared that the reports of another nuclear test in North Korea caused him great concern. "Should these reports be verified it would be another flagrant breach of international law and of the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council."

With this test North Korea is intentionally fuelling the extremely tense situation that already exists on the Korean peninsula. "The regime is once again demonstrating that it is a serious threat to world peace," said Sigmar Gabriel. He is certain that the United Nations Security Council will once again resolutely take the necessary steps. Germany will be consulting with its EU partners on a response.

The Federal Foreign Minister also pointed to the importance of the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the underlying international monitoring mechanism. The worldwide network of measuring stations was first to register and notify the unusually high level of seismic activity.