Guardian Live
Understanding North Korea: How likely is war?

Date 25/09/2017 Total price, inc booking fee £20 + BF Time 19:00 Age restrictions 16+

Doors will be open from 6:15pm, the event will start at 7pm.

Tensions between the US and North Korea have escalated since Donald Trump’s inauguration and North Korea’s continued missile tests. Hours after Trump warned the regime that any nuclear threat to the US would be met with “fire and fury”, North Korea said it was considering a missile strike on the US Pacific territory of Guam, used as a strategic military base.

Some experts have said that aggressive rhetoric from Trump is counterproductive and may in fact lead to a war, while others claim the possibility of a conflict remains low as North Korea is using its nuclear programme as a bargaining chip to gain recognition abroad, and legitimacy and support at home. How secure is its leader Kim Jong-un’s position and what is life really like within one of the world’s most isolated nations?

Despite the often patronising and sensationalist depictions of North Korea in western media, should we take the threat seriously and what would be the appropriate response? How likely is war? Could further UN sanctions make a difference? Or could more be achieved with diplomacy?

Join Emma Graham-Harrison, international affairs correspondent for the Guardian and The Observer, for a panel discussion with Tania Branigan, the Guardian’s leader writer and former China correspondent, Hazel Smith, professor at the Centre of Korean Studies at SOAS and author of North Korea: Markets and Military Rule, who spent two years living in North Korea, and Aidan Foster-Carter, honorary senior research fellow in sociology and modern Korea at Leeds University. One more panellist to be confirmed.

Running time: 90 minutes, no interval.

Wheelchair users and visitors who require an assistant may bring a companion free of charge. To book a free companion ticket please email