Published: Tue, April 18, 2017
Global | By Doris Richards

Abe: Japan planning for refugees in event of Korean crisis

Abe: Japan planning for refugees in event of Korean crisis

"There is a possibility that North Korea is already capable of delivering (via missile) a warhead containing sarin", Abe told a parliamentary diplomacy and defence committee, referring to the poison nerve agent. It's rumored that the "important event" being held in Pyongyang may be North Korea's sixth official nuke test and another step towards the countries nuclear capability expansion.

North Korea's nuclear weapons programme featured prominently in talks between Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping last week.

He tweeted: "North Korea is looking for trouble". But the same officials note the US does not have "certainty" on what chemical weapons the North possesses, in what quantities, or whether their chemicals are weaponized, because the North continues to be a "difficult intelligence target".

Abe made the remarks during a national security panel, according to the Associated Press.

Number of people killed when sarin was used in the 1995 attack in the Tokyo subway.

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Abe cited Syria, where dozens of people died recently in an alleged sarin nerve gas attack, as an example that Japan should take seriously, stressing the need to strengthen its deterrence against the North.

These celebrations coincide with increased tension in the peninsula after the USA responded to the latest North Korean missile launch by sending a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier towards the peninsula.

"Whatever the targets, Pyongyang's existing ballistic missile stockpile could easily deliver approximately one kiloton (1,000 metric tons) of high explosives, as well as other non conventional munitions - chemical, biological or even nuclear".

While Japan has long maintained a pacifist foreign policy following World War II, under Abe the country has moved away from this stance.

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