Kim Jong-un inspects a hydrogen bomb model hours before a nuclear test that caused an earthquake on September 3. Photo: KCNA via Reuters

It’s now more likely that North Korea will use a nuclear weapon than in the past due to the “very, very unpredictable” leadership of Kim Jong-un, retired admiral Mike Mullen, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on a TV talk show in the US on Sunday.

“I don’t know. I think it’s more probable than it used to be,” Mullen said on ABC television’s “This Week” when asked if the use of nuclear weapons looks possible in the future. “And it scares me to death, quite frankly. They’re the most dangerous weapons in the world. And certainly if we have someone in North Korea that has a lethal legacy, is very, very unpredictable and sees this as a way to solidify his future, that he could, well, not just attain them but potentially use them.”

Mullen, who served under President Barack Obama, partly blamed the exchange of heated rhetoric between Kim and US President Donald Trump for the uncertain state of affairs.  He noted that the two leaders have threatened to destroy each other’s countries and traded personal insults.

“I worry there is more uncertainty than there was a year ago, in principle because of the rhetoric that is there,” Mullen said.

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