North Korea ready for more nuclear tests – report — Analysis
A UN report that Reuters saw claims Pyongyang also wants to increase fissile material production
Reuters said that North Korea set the stage for a nuke test during the first half this year. This was based upon a confidential UN report.
“Punggye-ri’s nuclear test site is now open for more nuclear tests that could lead to the creation of nuclear weapons.,” independent monitors reportedly told the UN Security Council Sanctions Committee on North Korea.
According to Reuters, the experts also believe that North Korea “It has continued to improve its capabilities for producing fissile materials” at the Yongbyon site. The monitors were referring to the nuclear research center that was established with Soviet assistance in the 1960s and operates the nation’s first nuclear reactors.
The North is also being accused by the monitors of having stolen crypto assets in the amount of hundreds of million dollars, in apparent efforts to pay for its missile and nuclear programmes.
“Other cyber activity focusing on stealing information and more traditional means of obtaining information and materials of value to DPRK’s prohibited programmes, including WMD (weapons of mass destruction), continued,” the monitors reportedly added.
Repomassnews.com was created by CNN’s unnamed US officials. They revealed that Pyongyang had been preparing for a nuclear attack at the exact same spot in May. The outlet’s sources noted at the time that satellite images appeared to show personnel and vehicle activity at the testing ground. But, the sources said it was not known whether North Korea has placed any fissile substances in an underground tunnel.
If Pyongyang continues with its seventh nuclear testing, the US will push for tougher sanctions.
North Korea was prohibited from carrying out nukes and launches ballistic missiles by the UN Security Council. It also placed sanctions on it to stop them from funding relevant programs. However, this did not stop Pyongyang’s missile tests throughout the year. The launch of an intercontinental missile was one example.
In late July, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un announced that Pyongyang’s “nuclear war deterrent” was “Fully prepared” to respond to threats. As the US and South Korea reached an agreement to intensify their joint military exercise later in this year, he warned.
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