Satellite imagery reveals construction and preparations at North Korean nuclear site

After the North Korean government promised yesterday that there would be a “large and important event,” satellite imagery from the North Korean monitoring service 38 North was released. According to the analysts who inspected the picture, activities at the nuclear site are similar to those that were conducted prior to the most recent nuclear test, which analysts were also able to predict.

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Just yesterday, many questions arose after foreign reporters in North Korea were instructed to prepare for a “large and important event.” Today (Thursday), it seems that the picture has cleared up a bit. The North Korean monitoring service 38 North claims that the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site is “primed and ready” for nuclear tests. “The activity during the past six weeks is suggestive of the final preparations for a test,” 38 North analyst Joseph Bermudez said.

According to reports, the 38 North analysts examined satellite imagery of the nuclear site and found activities similar to those conducted prior to past nuclear tests. The prediction was published just as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced that North Korea is capable of arming missiles with sarin nerve gas, which is the same chemical weapon that was utilized by the Assad regime in Idlib.

Satellite imagery of the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site Photo Credit: CNN/Channel 2 News

Bermudez and his colleague Jack Liu correctly predicted the most recent nuclear test which was carried out by North Korea in September 2016. Since this February, they have been warning about heightened activity at the nuclear site, mainly new equipment arriving, activity at the command headquarters, excavation and water pumping to the underground nuclear site.

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