North Korea has made significant progress in its ICBM program giving it the capacity to field a reliable, nuclear-capable Intercontinental Ballistic Missile as early as next year, according to a report published in the Washington Post.

The Post report cited a confidential assessment by the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), which looked into the recent missile tests conducted by North Korea. The tests revealed remarkable technical advances by its weapons scientists.

The assessment also concluded that the country’s program can now move from prototype into an assembly line.

With this new development, the pressure has increased on the United States and other nations to act accordingly so that the nuclear threat by North Korea can be effectively dealt with.

North Korea threatens the US

Led by the United States, Pyongyang has long been the subject of efforts and enormous pressures to halt its nuclear weapons program. However, the country has defied such actions and continued its march towards ultimately achieving its nuclear goals.

Prompted by the statement made by Central Intelligence of America (CIA), director Mike Pompeo said that the Trump administration was looking to disarm Kim Jong Un’s regime. North Korea issued a threat through its state-run Central News Agency (KCNA) saying it will strike "the heart of the US" if America continues with its moves to denuclearize the country.

A Foreign Ministry spokesman said slightest sign of attempt to remove the supreme leadership will be responded by a “merciless blow at the heart of the US with…powerful nuclear hammer.”

While the US was celebrating 4th of July earlier, North Korea had successfully tested an ICBM, which by expert’s assessment, has a range that could reach Alaska though not the US mainland.

The possibility of additional UN sanctions

China meanwhile has been handed by the United States a proposed United Nation’s resolution that would impose additional sanctions on North Korea as a consequence of its latest intercontinental ballistic missile, according to ABC News.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told reporters that China has been negotiating with its close ally Russia on possible new sanctions.

China’s ambassador was quoted to have said that they are making progress on the resolution, which is to be submitted to the UN Security Council.

The question, however, is how much time it would take before an agreeable draft can be passed on to the rest of the members of the council.