South Korean officials watch television news channels showing North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on September 3, 2017. Photo: AFP

A report published on Wednesday at 38 North found that over 2 million lives could be lost should North Korea attack Seoul and Tokyo with its nuclear arsenal.

The analysis comes amid continued threats from the US President and members of his administration that Washington would consider military action to prevent the North from conducting additional nuclear or ballistic missile tests.

Using a computer model for calculating the blast areas for North Korea’s nuclear arsenal, analysts ran a scenario assuming that Pyongyang would launch all 25 of the operational nuclear weapons believed to be in their possession. Depending on the reliability of the North’s missile systems, the total combined death toll for attacks on Seoul and Tokyo would fall anywhere between 400,000 and 2 million.

Analysis also concluded, based on series of assumptions, that the number of fatalities from a single reliable 250 kt warhead airburst over the centers of Seoul and Tokyo could in itself reach almost 1.5 million.

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