Today on CNN, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) talked with Wolf Blitzer about the need to respond swiftly to North Korea’s latest nuclear test, reportedly its most powerful yet at a force equivalent to 10 kilotons of TNT. Video and a few key excerpts are below.


North Korea’s nuclear advances pose a threat to America and to our allies: “10 kilotons is twice the capability…than we saw in their last test in January. This is a 5.3 magnitude earthquake, basically, that resulted from this explosion. [T]hey claim they can now miniaturize these, put them on a warhead, including on a submarine, so that puts many allies at risk. We also know…we have an antidote for this if we want to use it.”

Aggressive sanctions enforcement is critical:So what we need to do is utilize the laws that are on the books now as well as the new U.N. sanctions that the Security Council passed. What we have is a failure to fully enforce those sanctions. And the consequence it would have on North Korea if we fully enforced it would be to shut off the hard currency that North Korea needs in order to continue these weapons programs…China has to understand that we will sanction those banks again, those Chinese banks that are transferring the hard currency…We need to use these powers that now the administration has under the bill that I authored – that’s been signed into law by the President – to tell China, ‘No, there will be secondary sanctions on any economic activity you are engaged in with North Korea.’ Because our goal right now is to shut [North Korea’s] economy down so they cannot continue to expand this nuclear weapons program.”