North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspects nuclear bomb making institute

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspects nuclear bomb making institute

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un inspects nuclear bomb making institute

North Korea has carried out a series of missile tests in recent months, including weapons that put the mainland U.S. in range. But there are still plenty of questions remaining, as the USA and expert analysts are unsure when the test will occur.

It says it detected a seismic wave from 12:34 p.m.to 12:36 p.m. around Punggyeri, North Korea.

Her comments came before the state-run KCNA news agency reported that Pyongyang had developed a more advanced nuclear weapon and that Kim had inspected a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded onto a new intercontinental ballistic missile.

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"We don't know if this thing is full of styrofoam, but yes, it is shaped like it has two devices", she said on Twitter.

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The most recent detonation, in September a year ago, was its "most powerful to date" according to Seoul, with a 10-kiloton yield - still less than the 15-kiloton USA device which destroyed Hiroshima in 1945.

It was also claimed that the hydrogen bomb had an "explosive power" of between tens and hundreds of kilotons, which could be detonated at high altitudes, resulting in a "super-powerful attack".

South Korea's military also called the tremor "artificial" and added it was analyzing whether a nuclear test took place.

The US Geological Survey said the quake struck 55 km north northwest of Kimchaek.

The key question is how far North Korea has gotten in efforts to consistently shrink down nuclear warheads so they can fit on long-range missiles.

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It has been subjected to seven rounds of United Nations Security Council sanctions over its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, but always insists it will continue to pursue them.

South Korea's main spy agency has previously asserted that it does not think Pyongyang now has the ability to develop miniaturized nuclear weapons that can be mounted on long-range ballistic missiles. Some experts think the North may have mastered this technology.

In August, US President Donald Trump warned Pyongyang it would face "fire and fury" if it continued to threaten the US.

"Underlining the need for the institute to dynamically conduct the campaign for successfully concluding the final-stage research and development for perfecting the state nuclear force, he set forth tasks to be fulfilled in the research into nukes", said the report.

The two Koreas have shared the world's most heavily fortified border since their war in the early 1950s ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty.

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