Fletcher in the News

DPRK Nuclear Test Come at a Sensitive Time for Northeast Asia: Prof. Sung-Yoon Lee

Sung-Yoon Lee is the Kim Koo-Korea Foundation Professor in Korean Studies and Assistant Professor at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University

North Korea tests third nuclear device, prompting emergency UN meeting

Despite strong international opposition, even from ally and benefactor China, North Korea on Tuesday tested its third nuclear device, prompting an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council.

The test appears to show an increase in North Korea’s nuclear capability and is likely to further isolate the Pyongyang regime. Analysts say that hopes for improved relations with the new governments in Washington, Seoul, Tokyo, or even Beijing are now on hold – at least for the time being.

“This is meant to get the attention of South Korea, the US, Japan and – dare I say it – China. With leadership transitions going on in all those countries this is a particularly appeasement-prone time,” says Sung-yoon Lee, assistant professor of Korean Studies at The Fletcher School at Tufts University in Boston. “None of those countries want a foreign policy crisis at the moment and will be more likely to resort to damage-control diplomacy.”

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