Data Reveals North Korea has Likely Resumed Nuclear Testing

Troubling news has surfaced that North Korea has restarted its nuclear reactor that is believed to produce plutonium for atomic weapons.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released a report Friday that says they’ve documented signs that the 5-megawatt reactor is in operation in the city of Yongbyon. Yongbyon is home to the country’s first nuclear reactor and the only known plutonium source for North Korea’s weapons program.

Since North Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – DPRK) expelled the IAEA in 2009, they’ve had no direct access to the site. Still, they have instead been monitoring the nuclear complex via satellite.

According to the report, “the DPRK has not abandoned its existing nuclear program in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner or ceased all related activities.”

The last known nuclear testing happened in 2017. Activities sped up this year as the report claims there are indications that Yongbyon’s radiochemical laboratory has been in operation from mid-February to early July this year.

The reactor itself, however, recently activated.

The report states, “There were no indications of reactor operation from early December 2018 to the beginning of July 2021. However, since early July 2021, there have been indications, including the discharge of cooling water, consistent with the operation of the reactor.”

It also mentions that in January 2021, Kim Jong Un delivered a report “on the work of the Seventh Central Committee of the Party at the Eighth Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea.”

His report “detailed the historic course of masterminding a great revolutionary turn for possessing the completely new nuclear capabilities aimed at attaining the goal of modernization of the nuclear force.”

The report caused alarm, as it also stated that they are using “accumulated nuclear technology developed to such a high degree as to miniaturize, lighten and standardize nuclear weapons and to make them tactical ones” and wish to complete the development of a super-large hydrogen bomb.

Kim Jong Un’s report also claimed that they researched a new design for a nuclear-powered submarine, and it was in the final examination stages.

The IAEA stated that North Korea’s “nuclear activities continue to be a cause for serious concern. Furthermore, the new indications of the operation of the 5-megawatt reactor and the radiochemical laboratory are deeply troubling.”

 

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