Elite North Korean soldiers have been armed with “nuclear backpacks” to spray deadly uranium at the enemy, reports claimed today.
Crackpot dictator Kim Jong-un is said to have put the nuke squads on readiness as around 75,000 US and South Korean troops take part in joint war games this month.
Sources inside the secretive regime claimed special units have been formed since March to carry the weapons and had been taking part in simulated training exercises with dummy bombs.
An insider told Radio Free Asia: “Outstanding soldiers were selected from each reconnaissance platoon and light infantry brigade to form the nuclear backpack unit the size of a battalion.”
Each portable nuclear device is said to weigh between 22lbs and 62lbs and can be worn on the soldier’s back like a rucksack.
Last October North Korean propaganda showed soldiers at a parade wearing rucksacks bearing a yellow and black radiation symbol, while similar backpacks were seen at a procession in 2013.
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The regime’s scientists have built a number of nuclear warheads but experts say it is unlikely they have been able to make them small enough to carry.
Instead the backpacks are designed to spray deadly radioactive material – probably uranium – at the enemy.
An engineer told the source: “Once the uranium has been sprayed, people cannot live there for several decades because of radioactive contamination.”
Reports of the sinister new weapons come amid escalating tensions over Kim’s nuclear ambitions.
The UN imposed fresh sanctions on the regime after its fourth underground nuclear test in January.
It has also been testing submarine-launched ballistic missiles that could in theory deliver warheads as far as the US.
Last week a report revealed North Korea has stockpiled a greater nuclear arsenal than previously feared.
And it was also reported trigger-happy Kim had one of his top officials executed with an anti-aircraft gun for falling asleep in a meeting.