North Korea, a reclusive Communist nation lead by Kim Jong Il, has conducted a successful nuclear weapons test and is now the eighth declared nuclear-capable nation. This development has received near-unanimous worldwide condemnation, including condemnation from the United Nations Security Council.
If the test is confirmed to have been a successful nuclear detonation, North Korea will join the United States, Russia, France, Britain, China, India, and Pakistan as a nuclear power. Israel is also believed to possess nuclear capability, but has not declared it officially or engaged in testing.
It is unclear at this time what the world’s response will be, but many—particularly regional powers like China, South Korea, and Japan—see this as a dangerous threat that may destabilize the area’s tenuous peace.