SEOUL, South Korea — Seismic activity was detected on the Korean Peninsula midday Thursday, and officials in South Korea told the Associated Press North Korea had conducted an atomic test.
North Korea later said Friday it had detonated a warhead.
This would be the fifth atomic test the nation has done, producing its biggest-ever explosive yield, as reported by the Associated Press.
Leaders from South Korea, Japan, the U.S. and China condemned the nuclear test.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye said the test showed the “fanatic recklessness of the Kim Jong Un government as it clings to a nuclear development.”
The Associated Press reported that Park said South Korea would employ all measures to put more pressure on North Korea.
Park spoke with President Obama and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe about the test in separate phone calls, according to the Associated Press.
Obama reiterated the U.S. commitment to the security of America’s allies in Asia, and said he would continue to “ensure provocative actions from North Korea are met with serious consequences.”
Abe told reporters Friday that North Korea’s actions were “absolutely not acceptable.”
“If North Korea did conduct a nuclear test, it is absolutely not acceptable, and we must lodge a strong protest,” Abe said.
China’s Foreign Ministry followed suit. They issued a statement criticizing North Korea for conducting the test with “disregard” for international objections and consequences.
The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency said the launch, if confirmed, is in clear violation of numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions, according to the Associated Press.
Monitors detected artificial seismic waves Thursday afternoon and the U.S. Geological Survey called the activity an “explosion” on its website.
North Korean state TV said Thursday afternoon they had successfully conducted a nuclear explosion test, as reported by the Associated Press. The nation said it intends to continue to strengthen the quantity and quality of its nuclear weapons program, despite sanctions passed earlier this year to limit their nuclear activity.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.AlertMe