UN experts have warned that North Korea is preparing to carry out its first nuclear weapon test since 2017.
Construction works at an underground test facility in the north of the country have been observed in recent months: “works at the Punge-ri test site pave the way for additional nuclear tests to be conducted to develop nuclear weapons,” explains a confidential UN expert document obtained by knowledge of German Agency and Reuters news agency.
Satellite photos of the facility show the network of underground galleries and tunnels at Punggye-ri are being restored, while structures destroyed in 2018, when North Korea held talks with the US, are being rebuilt.
According to the report submitted to the UN, which covers the activity of the past few months, the production of fissile material at the Yongbyon nuclear power plant has also increased significantly.
The US and South Korea have expressed concern over the possibility of North Korea carrying out another nuclear weapon test for months, following a series of missile launches.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has also been highlighting since June the activity at Pune, where six nuclear weapons tests by North Korea were conducted between 2006 and 2017.