WASHINGTON, Sept. 17 (Yonhap) -- North Korea has developed a "small number" of nuclear weapons, the vice chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff said Thursday.
Gen. John Hyten told a virtual forum that the specific numbers were "classified" and in many ways hard to understand.
"But a small number is a confident characterization of nuclear capabilities that can threaten their neighbors or the United States," he said in a symposium hosted by the National Defense University's Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction.
The U.S. has never officially discussed its assessment of North Korea's nuclear capabilities, but many have said the communist state may possess more than 70 nuclear warheads, given that it may have started developing nuclear weapons as early as the early 1990s.
North Korea has conducted a total of six nuclear tests, between October 2006 and September 2017.