In an address today at the White House, President Barack Obama condemned North Korea for this morning’s apparently successful test of an atomic weapon. He called the test “a blatant violation of international law” and promised to “work with our friends and allies to stand up to this behavior.” He said the United States was determined to protect “the peace and security of the world.”
According to South Korea, the US wasn’t taken by surprise however, as officials say that North Korea had notified the US in advance of the test. North Korea had threatened such a test last month, and South Korea had reported brisk activity at the test site.
The United Nations Security Council also voted to condemned the move as a “clear violation” of the resolution it passed after the 2006 atomic test. Britain, France and Japan are expected to push for new sanctions against the nation.
Yet it seems unlikely that North Korea would even dispute that it is violating the UN resolution, having abandoned the six-party peace talks and ousted the UN’s inspectors last months after a previous resolution condemned them for a satellite launch. The isolated nation has very limited contact with the outside world to begin with, so it is unclear how much affect future sanctions might have on them.