By SAM SHOLLI
01:40, Sun, Sep 10, 2017 | UPDATED: 02:45, Sun, Sep 10, 2017
Iran is reportedly top of the list of countries suspected of assisting North Korea
Senior Whitehall sources have told The Sunday Telegraph it is not credible that North Korean scientists alone brought about the technological advances.
One Government minister reportedly said: “North Korean scientists are people of some ability, but clearly they’re not doing it entirely in a vacuum.”
Another Foreign Office source reportedly added: “For them to have done this entirely on their own stretches the bounds of credulity.”
Whilst Iran is reportedly top of the list of countries suspected of assisting North Korea in some form, Russia is also suspected of doing so.
North Korea threatens USA with ‘miserable end’
UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson also hinted at his department’s concerns last week as he took questions from MPs about the North Korea crisis.
Mr Johnson said: “There is currently an investigation into exactly how the country has managed to make this leap in technological ability.
“We are looking at the possible role that may have been played, inadvertently or otherwise, by some current and former nuclear states.”
It comes amid rising fears of World War 3 after North Korea conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear weapon test last week – describing it as an advanced hydrogen bomb for a long-range missile.
Donald Trump has warned Kim Jong-un he will regret forcing the US to take military action against North Korea.
The Republican President has refused to rule out a strike against the reclusive state as tensions between Pyongyang and Washington reach boiling point.
During a news conference Mr Trump said military action is “an option” against Kim’s hermit nation.
Although the US President admitted he would “prefer” not to use force against North Korea, he fired an ominous warning to the country’s dictator.
Trump says military solution ‘not inevitable’ in North Korea crisis
He said: “Military action would certainly be an option.
“Is it inevitable? Nothing is inevitable.
“I would prefer not going the route of the military.
“If we do use it on North Korea, it will be a very sad day for North Korea.”