Pentagon: N Korea 'could target US with atomic missile'

A Pentagon report said North Korea's development of nuclear technology and long-range missiles will mean it will be eventually be able to hit the US with an atomic weapon.

The report to Congress said continued development of Pyongyang's Taepodong-2 missile could ultimately reach parts of the US.

These advances in ballistic-missile delivery systems, coupled with developments in nuclear technology... are in line with North Korea's stated objective of being able to strike the U.S. homeland.

North Korea will move closer to this goal, as well as increase the threat it poses to US forces and allies in the region, if it continues testing and devoting scarce regime resources to these programs.

– Pentagon report to Congress

North Korea launched a multi-stage rocket that delivered a satellite into orbit in December, an advance that "contributes heavily" to the country's development of a long-range ballistic missile capability, the report said.

The nation is also continuing to refine its atomic weapons capability, including a nuclear detonation in February, and is capable of conducting "additional nuclear tests at any time," the report said.