Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday it may take more than sanctions to end North Korea's nuclear weapons threat because its isolation from the global marketplace makes U.S. economic pressure less effective than it was on Iran.
The American goal in North Korea remains the same, Kerry insisted: A peaceful solution that leads to nuclear disarmament. But he also warned of increasingly "severe consequences" against Pyongyang a day after it declared that it has upgraded and restarted all of its atomic fuel plants — meaning it could potentially make more sophisticated nuclear weapons.
The North also said this week it was ready for more rocket launches whenever it sees fit, and there is wide speculation it could conduct a launch or hold another test of a nuclear weapons to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the founding of its ruling party. The date is Oct. 10.