Russia and North Korea: Nuclear proliferation and power transition

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


North Korea’s nuclear ambitions remain the key impediment to peace and stability in Korea and Northeast Asia. Since their inception in spring 2003, the Six-Party Talks (SPT) have had some breakthroughs over the years. The SPT, however, have been in the doldrums since late 2009. The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea) has tested nuclear weapons and launched long-range missiles in defiance of the international community’s warnings and pressures. In 2010, Pyongyang carried out two serious military provocations against Seoul, and in so doing brought the Korean Peninsula to the brink of an all-out war. On December 17, 2011, Kim Jong-il suddenly died of a heart attack after 17 years in power. His third and youngest son Kim Jong-un at age 28 succeeded him as the new leader of the heavily militarized, impoverished nation. To date, Kim Jongun’s foreign policy is indistinguishable from his father’s. The main difference is that Kim Jong-un’s North Korea employs harsher rhetoric against the United States and the Republic of Korea (ROK or South Korea) and behaves even more unpredictably and aggressively than ever before. But the differences are negligible. In substance Kim Jong-un’s foreign policy is an exact replica of his father’s. Like before, Kim Jong-un continues North Korea’s nuclear and long-range missile programs while upholding the Sungun (military first) policy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNorth Korea and Security Cooperation in Northeast Asia
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781317086628
ISBN (Print)9781472417862
StatePublished - May 23 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Tae-Hwan Kwak and Seung-Ho Joo.


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