Satellite Photos Show Visible Construction at N Korea Nuclear Site

Published By : 17 Jun 2015 | Published By : QYRESEARCH

Recent satellite photographs not only reveal visible construction work at a nuclear complex in North Korea but also show indications that the existing nuclear reactor is not completely operational, a research institute based in the United States said on Wednesday. 

The Nyongbyon complex is the only publicly known nuclear facility in North Korea. Even though international monitors were driven out in 2009, commercial satellite images reveal a partial view into the operations of the North Korean nuclear reactor. 

The US Korea Institute at John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies states that a picture captured late last month reveals construction work near the uranium enrichment unit. The image also shows some construction work on what seems to be a structure concerned with the electricity supply of a light water reactor that is still incomplete. 

North Korea’s present plutonium reactor seems to be functioning at reduced power levels and on the day that the satellite image was taken, it was not in operation. In 2013, the plutonium reactor was restarted after being shut down for one year. North Korea had raised fresh alarms over its nuclear plans after going back on a commitment of aid for disarmament discussions. 

The reactor can be utilized to generate fissile material meant for nuclear weapons. The assessment of the US Korea Institute states that it was since the fall of 2014 that the reactor began operating irregularly.

Editor of the US Korea Institute’s website 38 North and former official at the State Department, Joel Wit said that even though North Korea has not recently conducted any long range missile or nuclear test, Pyongyang is definitely determined to go ahead with its nuclear programs. 

The light water reactor is being built at Nyongbyon in North Korea since 2010 and officials say that it is mainly for the generation of electricity.
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