After H-Bomb Test, N. Korea Wants to Focus on Economy

After H-Bomb Test, N. Korea  Wants to Focus on EconomyAfter H-Bomb Test, N. Korea  Wants to Focus on Economy

After ringing in the new year with claims of its first successful hydrogen bomb test, North Korea is now calling on the United States and the world community to accept it as a nuclear power, jettison the pursuit of punitive sanctions and allow it to focus on what it really wants: build up the nation’s troubled economy.

While waiting to see what kind of new sanctions might be imposed by the United States, the United Nations and others, North Korean officials say that with the test now out of the way they want the US and its allies to back off and allow them to turn their attention toward peaceful economic growth, as promised by leader Kim Jong Un in his New Year address, AP reported.

“The US should be accustomed to the status of the DPRK as a nuclear weapons state whether it likes it or not,” a foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement issued Friday, adding that the North will continue to bolster “in every way” its ability to field nuclear weapons to cope with the “ceaseless provocations” emanating from Washington.

North Korea’s official name is the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Reflecting Pyongyang’s concerns over the looming threat of sanctions, the statement struck a deliberately conciliatory tone by adding that the North stands by its previous offers to put a moratorium on nuclear tests and seek a peace treaty to formally end the Korean War if the United States halts its annual military exercises with the South - an offer Washington has repeatedly ignored in the past.

It also said the North would not use the weapons recklessly.