New satellite images reveal activity at unidentified North Korean missile base

Kim Jong-un led the testing of a newly developed tactical weapon last month

Kim Jong-un led the testing of a newly developed tactical weapon last month Credit KCNA Reuters

One such facility is the missile base near Yeongjeo-dong, a site that has long concerned US and South Korean officials and the subject of the analysis of the new images released Wednesday. There have been five summit meetings between the leaders of the Koreas, three of them between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, but they all happened either in Pyongyang, North Korea's capital, or the inter-Korean border village of Panmunjom.

North Korea wants sanctions relief, the end-of-war declaration and other reciprocal measures from the United States, arguing it has taken some steps, like dismantling its nuclear testing facility and releasing American detainees. In April, he placed a moratorium on nuclear or long-range missile tests, saying his country no longer needed to conduct them.

The Singapore summit, while historic in terms of who came to the table, produced a vaguely worded agreement to "build a lasting and stable peace regime" and for North Korea to "work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula".

But Kim has yet to clarify whether and when he might dismantle his nuclear warheads and delivery missiles.

The North officially suspended its nuclear and missile tests ahead of the June summit, and missile production and deployment does not technically violate any agreement between Pyongyang and the US and South Korea.

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"Satellite images show that the base remains active".

Those missiles are being deployed at bases throughout North Korea despite the Singapore meeting, they said. "Moreover, in the past year North Korea has significantly expanded a nearby facility that appears to be another missile base", the Middlebury Institute report states, noting that it is unclear whether the two bases are separate, or whether one is subordinate to other.

North Korea has clandestinely expanded one of its main long-range missile development bases during recent months, according to new reports based on satellite imagery collected during October and November.

As of August 2018, researchers said North Korea is continuing to construct an extremely large underground facility. But the country has never signed any agreement to curtail or disclose its missile capabilities.

But despite the meetings and ongoing talks, many in Washington remain skeptical of the North Korea's seriousness.

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