On March 3 the N. Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs made an official statement transmitted by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). In it Pyongyang scraps the 1999 moratorium on the testing of ballistic missiles announced during the talks with Clinton Administration.
"The dialog with the US ceased in 2001 with the coming to power of the Bush administration, and it means that we have the right to resume missile testing", the N. Korean statement says.
"The US must apologize for the verbal attacks it has made and take back its words, stop its hostile policies, aimed at toppling the existing (N. Korean) regime, unequivocally manifest its political commitment to peaceful co-existence and demonstrate it in deed", the document says.
The Japanese "Kiodo Tsusin" News Agency reports that Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary, Hiriyuki Hosoda, has called on world community not to pay too much attention to such N. Korean demarches. "We are sure Pyongyang would soon be persuaded to resume the six-party talks", he said during a press conference in Tokyo on March 3.
In mid-February N. Korean diplomats claimed that the PDRK had manufactured nuclear weapons of its own "to counter the US policy of isolating and stifling N. Korea".
The first test launching of a ballistic missile was made by the PDRK in 1998. Then the missile flew over Japan and fell in the Pacific Ocean.
Experts believe that the PDRK has ballistic missiles "Tepkhodon-1" and "Tepkhodon-2" with a range of 2.5 and 5 thousand kilometers respectively.