North Korea planning new nuclear test, South Korean intelligence report says
April 9th, 2012
06:26 AM ET

North Korea planning new nuclear test, South Korean intelligence report says

By Paula Hancocks and Jethro Mullen

North Korea is planning a new nuclear test in the area where it staged previous atomic blasts, according to a report from South Korean intelligence officials obtained by CNN.

The intelligence report has come to light as North Korea gets ready to carry out a controversial rocket launch this week, a move that would further strain ties between the reclusive, nuclear-armed state and other countries in the region. The planned rocket launch is scheduled to take place just months after the ascendancy of its new leader.

The South Korean intelligence report says it is highly probable that after the long-range missile launch, North Korea will use the ensuing international condemnation as an excuse to go ahead with the nuclear test in Punggye-ri, the site in the country's northeast where the other two tests were conducted in 2006 and 2009.

The report, which said such a test would be considered a grave provocation, includes satellite images that it claims were filmed recently and show the final stages of a tunnel being dug at the site.

The photos show an unusual pile of earth and sand near the opening of the tunnel, and the report says this pile has been slowly increasing since March.

Read more of the story here.

soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Computer Repairs High Wycombe

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    April 19, 2012 at 7:09 am | Reply
  2. WeDon'tMatter

    Wonder which one of the three guys in the photo get the honor of standing there to light the fuse on launch day?

    April 9, 2012 at 9:24 pm | Reply
  3. WeDon'tMatter

    Seems that we conducted nuclear weapons tests and launched satellites at the same time in our history, must be the way it is done. Stop sweating the small stuff. China will keep a tight leash on North Korea. The U.S., South Korea and Japan are all capable of stopping the delivery of a N.K. missile delivered nuke, they wouldn't stand a chance and they know it.

    April 9, 2012 at 9:19 pm | Reply
  4. Michael

    War between Koreas you will be condemning millions of All Koreans to death and and quite possably more than a few americans as well. N.K. may be one hard nut to crack but to use a 16 lb sledge hammer is not leave any thing left bnt a crushed mess and you waving your joysticks.

    April 9, 2012 at 11:12 am | Reply
  5. Michael

    Interesting! A tunnel, hmmm, If every Korean tunnel was for nuke test? This one most likely is, wonder what type? Korea has to have the 2nd largest tunnel system, US 1st, but as a nation there is more under ground facilitys. speculating, than above percentage wize. For you armchair warriors, there are very few above ground millitary targets. All are not nuke hardend as some facing south date way back. Who knows other than our millitary, but they lie so much? What is known is that even with US Tech lead our air arm knows the dangers as today our fiters have found as wany as 3 NK fighters on their butts before they could evade and just as their warnings went off. SK without North needing nukes would feel more Shock and Awe in the first hour than Iraq recievedunder Clinton and Bush combined. And Clinton in last few weeks in office dropped more than all tonnage used on Afgan and Iraq previously combined. So while you who would love to see

    April 9, 2012 at 10:55 am | Reply
  6. back draft

    will iran annouce after the test that this was an iranian device ?

    April 9, 2012 at 9:26 am | Reply

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