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North Korea has carried out a “very important” test at its Sohae satellite launch site, state media KCNA reported on Sunday, with talks with the United States over denuclearisation in deadlock.
“A very important test was carried out at the Sohae Satellite Launch Site on December 7th, 2019,” a spokesman for the North’s National Academy of Science said.
The result of the latest test will have an “important effect” on changing the “strategic status” of North Korea, the spokesman said in a statement carried by the KCNA news agency.
The report did not specify what was tested, but the site has previously been used to launch long-range rockets.
KCNA said the test results would be used for upgrading the country’s strategic status.
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North Korea, which has warned it could take a “new path” amid stalled denuclearisation talks with the United States, is ramping up the pressure ahead of a end-of-year deadline it set for the US to propose a new offer to kickstart the talks.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had agreed to close the Sohae site during a summit last year with South Korean President Moon Jae-in in Pyongyang as part of trust-building measures.
Kim has also held three meetings with US President Donald Trump since June 2018 but little progress has been made in efforts towards denuclearisation.
On Thursday, the North’s vice foreign minister warned of returning to a war of words with the US, threatening to resume referring to Trump as a “dotard” – Pyongyang’s nickname for the US leader at the height of tensions in 2017.
Those comments followed a warning that if the US used military force against the North it would take “prompt corresponding actions at any level”.
At the recent NATO summit, Trump boasted about Washington’s “most powerful military”, adding: “Hopefully, we don’t have to use it, but if we do, we’ll use it. If we have to, we’ll do it.”
Apsny News English