There has been fear and anger over a possible second nuclear-weapon test in North Korea. Protestors in neighbouring South Korea have been showing their opposition to Pyongyang’s defiance of UN warnings. Seoul has called for a strong international response to the atomic detonation which was carried out on Monday. A false alarm today in the shape of an earthquake off northern Japan triggered concerns in the region of a second test.
The announcement of the first has been seen as a serious blow to the political relationship between North and South Korea. Seoul has since suspended some of its humanitarian aid in retaliation. North Korea has said imposing strict sanctions would be tantamount to war. The country claims it was forced to go ahead with its test after such threats from the US.
Emergency talks of the UN Security Council in New York are continuing. The five permanent member states are deciding whether to go ahead with commercial and economic embargoes. The US and Japan are pushing for them to be imposed, Japan has already gone ahead with its own. Russia and China have insisted an eventual UN resolution should not involve the use of force. Meanwhile both the South Korean and US military are on high alert in the area, the US investigating whether Monday’s seismic activity was indeed the product of a nuclear explosion.