The report by an independent panel of experts monitoring UN sanctions said several countries, which it did not identify, believed North Korea's past six nuclear tests had likely helped it develop miniaturised nuclear devices.
Senior North Korean foreign ministry official Kwon Jong Gun ridiculed “nonsensical” calls by South Korea for revived negotiations between the US and North Korea, saying it has lost its relevance as a mediator.
The 49 individuals and organisations were sanctioned under a new regime targeting people who violate human rights.
Seventy years after the Korean War began, prospects for a peace treaty to officially end the conflict appear as distant as ever, as the two Koreas held low-key commemorations amid heightened tension on the peninsula.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un presided over a video conference meeting of the ruling party's Central Military Commission, where members decided to suspend the military plans. Kim's sister warned last week of military action against the south.
Tensions between the two Koreas has risen in recent weeks after the North blew up a joint liaison office on its side of the border, declared an end to dialogue and threatened military action.
Kim Yeon-chul, South Korea's point man for relations with the North, resigned over heightened tensions on the peninsula days after Pyongyang blew up its liaison office with the South.
US, Russia, UK, France, China, Pakistan, India, Israel and North Korea together possessed an estimated 13,400 nuclear weapons at 2020 begining, Swedish peace research institute says.
South Korea made the statement after the sister of North Korea's leader warned of retaliatory measures against the country over anger toward defectors sending back propaganda leaflets.
For several days, North Korea has lashed out at South Korea, threatening to close an inter-Korean liaison office and other projects if the South does not stop defectors from sending leaflets and other material into the North.
A stronger relationship between the two will trigger another headache for the US, but this time in its own hemisphere.
A meeting chaired by Kim Jong-un also discussed increasing the capabilities for deterring “the threatening foreign forces," according to state media KCNA.
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