Saturday, 23 February, 2019

WSJ reports that North Korea expands key missile-manufacturing plant

WSJ reports that North Korea expands key missile-manufacturing plant WSJ reports that North Korea expands key missile-manufacturing plant
Melinda Barton | 05 July, 2018, 02:44

He will also make stops in Hanoi and Abu Dhabi before traveling to Brussels for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit to join US President Donald Trump.

At their Singapore summit last month, Trump saluted a North Korean general, agreed to end USA military drills with South Korea, and emerged with a vague agreement that North Korea would work toward "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

But it's still unclear whether Pyongyang would agree to that.

The Defense Intelligence Agency believes that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has no intention of engaging in a full denuclearization program, at least for now, according to an administration official familiar with the agency's finding. But recently disclosed information has contradicted that claim. Meanwhile, some news outlets have reported that North Korea is increasing its nuclear production. Evidence collected since the Singapore summit points to preparations to deceive the US about the number of nuclear warheads in North Korea's arsenal as well as the existence of undisclosed facilities used to make fissile material for nuclear bombs, according to the report.

Wayne Lee, Steve Herman reported this story for VOA News. The official was not authorized to comment publicly on the matter and spoke on condition of anonymity. "I'm sure that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be discussing this with the North Koreans in the near future about really how to dismantle all of their WMD and ballistic missile programs in a year", Bolton said.

She declined to get into the details, including what specifically Pompeo hopes to address or whether he will lay down any markers for North Korea to meet, other than to say it will be a day and a half of meetings.

The rapid timeline he proposed contrasts with more measured, methodical strategies that most North Korea experts insist are needed to produce a lasting denuclearization agreement.

North Korea will have to back up its words with verifiable actions, Bolton said.

Kim, during his meetings this year with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, committed "to denuclearize South Korea by removing the U.S. nuclear umbrella and its forces from the Korean peninsula", retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Colonel Tara O, an adjunct fellow at the Pacific Forum, tells VOA.

Patrick Cronin of the Center for a New American Security, an Asia expert in close touch with USA and South Korean officials, said the thinking seemed to be that although Kim would not want to give up his entire nuclear program anytime soon, he might be willing to dismantle major portions of it.

The result has left much of the hard work to Pompeo.

Since then, Kim has been on a diplomatic push.

His trip follows discussions Sunday at the Korean demilitarized zone between U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim and North Koreans.

"This is just where North Korea's programme is and they seem to be improving that plutonium reactor and that's a very very bad sign". The athletes are mostly from South Korea's men's and women's national basketball teams. At a recent rally, he also said he had "great success" with Pyongyang.

Close-up of new cooling water pump house and in-filled water channel at North Korea's Yongbyon nuclear facility.