US President Donald Trump has made a sharp retort to the North Korean leader’s recent threat that he had a nuclear button on his desk, saying his nuclear button “is a much bigger & more powerful one than his.”
“North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.’ Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!” Trump said in a tweet on Tuesday.
The US president’s reply came a day after Kim used his televised New Year’s Day speech to warn Washington that, “The entire United States is within range of our nuclear weapons, and a nuclear button is always on my desk. This is reality, not a threat.”
During his address, the North Korean leader stressed the importance of reducing military tensions on the Korean peninsula, also expressing an interest in dialogue with South Korea.
North Korea has been under a raft of harsh UN sanctions since 2006 over its nuclear tests as well as multiple rocket and missile launches. Pyongyang has firmly defended its military program as a deterrent against the hostile policies of the US and its regional allies, including South Korea and Japan.
On November 29, North Korea said it had successfully tested a new missile that put the US mainland within range of its nuclear weapons. It also declared itself a “nuclear state.”