On a large television screen in front of Pyongyang's railway station, a North Korean state television broadcaster announces the news that North Korea conducted a nuclear test on Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. North Korea conducted a nuclear test at an underground site in the remote northeast Tuesday, taking an important step toward its goal of building a bomb small enough to be fitted on a missile that could reach United States. The TV screen text reads "Korean Central News Agency reports," and "The third underground nuclear test successfully conducted." (AP Photo/Jon Chol Jin)
PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea says its nuclear test was its "first response" to U.S. threats and warns it will continue with unspecified "second and third measures of greater intensity" if the United States maintains its hostility.
The North's Foreign Ministry said in a statement that its nuclear test Tuesday was a "self-defensive measure" that does not violate any international law.
The test is seen as a crucial step toward North Korea's goal of building a bomb small enough to be fitted on a missile capable of striking the United States.
North Korea's test drew immediate condemnation from Washington, the U.N. and others. Even its only major ally, China, voiced opposition.
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