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North Korea

  • Politics and Strategy

    North Korea: An oil embargo probably wouldn’t work

    06 September 2017.  In the wake of North Korea’s latest provocations, some politicians have called for an oil embargo on the country to bring it to heel.

  • IISS Voices

    Nuclear test reinforces North Korean capabilities

    04 September 2017.  Sanctions and wild threats will not end North Korea’s nuclear programme; Washington should consider how to contain a nuclear-armed Pyongyang. Matthew Cottee predicts a prolonged and uncomfortable standoff.

  • Expert Commentary

    North Korea’s Hwasong-12 Launch

    01 September 2017.  Latest tests are another sign that Pyongyang is deadly serious about developing and fielding nuclear-tipped missiles capable of striking the US mainland.

  • IISS Voices

    The secret to North Korea’s ICBM success

    14 August 2017.  How has North Korea managed to make such astounding progress with its long-range missile programme over the last two years? Here, Michael Elleman shares the first solid evidence that North Korea has acquired a high-performance liquid-propellant engine from illicit networks in Russia and Ukraine.

  • Politics and Strategy

    Deterring North Korea the wrong way

    11 August 2017.  Donald Trump’s threats towards North Korea are likely to be counterproductive, warn Mark Fitzpatrick and Michael Elleman.

  • Expert Commentary

    Trump’s North Korea remarks: threat or bluster?

    09 August 2017.  Angry exchanges between the United States and North Korea are ratcheting up tensions and could create misperceptions that lead to war, analyst Mark Fitzpatrick says.

  • IISS Voices

    US policy challenges in the Asia-Pacific

    31 July 2017.  Tensions with China may increase as the year wears on – while North Korea's missile tests present an urgent challenge.  

  • Expert Commentary

    Video casts doubt on North Korea’s ability to field an ICBM re-entry vehicle

    31 July 2017.  Video footage of the 28 July Hwasong-14 test suggests that North Korea’s engineers have yet to master re-entry technologies and more work remains before Kim Jong-un has an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of striking the United States mainland.

  • Strategic Comments

    The Ban Treaty arrives

    26 July 2017. 

    The text of the recently negotiated Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons released on 7 July, approved by a vote of 122-1, is likely to be approved by the UN General Assembly and ratified. While none of the nuclear-weapons states or their allies favours the treaty, it marks the rejection of their customary consensus-based approach. Accordingly, the status quo will continue, but now faces a more invigorated and unified opposition.

  • Politics and Strategy

    Could a ‘double freeze’ be viable path to peace on Korean Peninsula?

    05 July 2017.  The recent and successful ICBM test by North Korea demonstrates the urgency of a strategy to prevent further provocations.