NORTH KOREA threats could escalate into nuclear conflict in as little as 12 months, according to a shock warning from a defence expert.
North Korea sparked fears of World War 3 after the rogue nation refused to put a stop to its ongoing effort to develop an arsenal of deadly nuclear weapons.
US President Donald Trump promised to return fire to any aggression from the hermit state’s despot leader Kim Jong-un.
This has led to predictions from a range of experts, suggesting a third world war is potentially on the horizon.
Malcolm Davis, a senior analyst with the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, suggested that date could be within a year.
He told Sky News Australia: “I think the ideal solution would be for China to deal with Kim Jong-un and his regime decisively, I think you know what I mean by that.
“They certainly have it in their interests to ensure the regime or North Korea doesn’t collapse.
“That doesn’t necessarily mean Kim Jong-un has to be at the head of that regime.
“There is one option that the Chinese deal with this problem. The second option is that we try and deter North Korea, and that would mean we redeploy tactical nuclear forces into the Korean peninsula and on ships at sea, to make it clear to Kim Jong-un that if he uses nuclear weapons then he’ll pay the ultimate price.
“Third third option is, sadly, war, and we have to be prepared for that possibility, perhaps, within the next 12 months.”
Dr Davis said he didn’t believe a “diplomatic solution” was foreseeable in the future and suggested the West may have to rely on at least one of his three suggestions.
Another Expert, Dr Lassina Zerbo, suggested the prospect of World War 3 is “closer” than ever before with the world at its “most” dangerous since the Cold War.
Dr Zerbo, executive secretary for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), said: “I think the risk is bigger than when I joined the organisation 13 years ago.
“I think the world is more dangerous than it used to be 10 years ago.
“Since the Cold War, we have never been in this situation where things are so tense and then nobody knows what is happening.
“It would be dangerous for our environment, dangerous for the population because a weapon today is hundreds of times more powerful than those that were tested 45 years ago.
“We are closer to a nuclear war, but my hope relies on the power of multilateral diplomacy.”
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