South Korea opposes the acquiring of its own nuclear weapons, despite North Korea's test

South Korea's Defence Minister Han Min Koo (left) alongside General Curtis Scaparrotti, commander of the US Forces Korea, announcing a South Korea-US joint press statement reaffirming the USA's defense commitment to Korea, in Seoul, South Korea, on J
South Korea's Defence Minister Han Min Koo (left) alongside General Curtis Scaparrotti, commander of the US Forces Korea, announcing a South Korea-US joint press statement reaffirming the USA's defense commitment to Korea, in Seoul, South Korea, on Jan 7, 2016, as the two allies coordinate their response to North Korea's claim of a successful hydrogen bomb test a day earlier. The statement, composed based on Mr Han's telephone talks with US Secretary of Defence Ash Carter on the night of Jan 6, reaffirms the "ironclad commitment" of the US to the defence of South Korea, including all aspects of the extended deterrence.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY
South Korean Defence Minister Han Min Koo.
South Korean Defence Minister Han Min Koo.PHOTO: EPA

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's defence minister said on Thursday (Jan 7) that the government opposed having its own nuclear weapons, after North Korea said it had tested its first hydrogen nuclear device.

"We consistently pursue the Korean peninsula's denuclearisation," South Korean Defence Minister Han Min Koo told lawmakers, rejecting growing calls for a South Korean nuclear deterrent against the North.

Mr Han separately told lawmakers that the military was exploring possible options, including the resumption of loudspeaker broadcasts along the inter-Korean border.

Loudspeaker broadcasts of propaganda ratcheted up tensions between North and South last year.

A South Korean military official also said that the country is in talks with the US to deploy US strategic assets on the Korean Peninsula, a South Korean military official said.

However, the military official declined to provide further details on what kind of assets are under consideration.

Meanwhile, the Yonhap news agency reported on Thursday that South Korea's Defence Ministry does not believe that North Korea's test of an enhanced nuclear fission device was successful.

In a mark of protest against the test, South Korea will limit entry to the Kaesong industrial complex jointly operated with North Korea to minimal production staff, said an official from Seoul's Unification Ministry.

Yonhap also said new initiatives on cooperation with North Korea will be pushed back.