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North Korea ‘begins dismantling’ rocket test site | #TheCube

25 July 2018

The 38 North think tank said images showed work at the Sohae Satellite Launching Station to dismantle a building that is used to build space-launch vehicles and a nearby rocket engine test stand used to develop liquid-fuel engines for ballistic missiles.

The apparent dismantling of the Sohae test site comes amid rising questions over North Korea's willingness to stick to the pledges made at the 12 June summit.

No work has been reported at any of the other sites so far, which include the Chamjin Machine Factory test stand, Iha-ri Driver Training and Test Facility test stand, Magunpo Solid Rocket Motor Test Facility, Nampo Shipyard submersible test stand barge, Sinpo South Shipyard submersible test stand barge, Sinpo South Shipyard test stand, and Tonghae (Musudan-ri) Satellite Launch Facility.

Instead, Schoff suggested the US could reciprocate by working with Seoul, Beijing, Tokyo and Moscow to approve some economic engagement exemptions for South Korea to work with the North in certain special economic zones.

Lee said, if North Korea dismantles the entire Sohae launch area, it would reduce greatly the country's missile threat.

"Most of all, retiring an old nuclear site or missile launch pad has absolutely no relevance to the cold reality that North Korea owns an operational nuclear weapons and ballistic missile arsenal whose capabilities continue to grow".

North Korea's coal-intensive industries and manufacturing sectors have suffered as the UN Security Council ratcheted up the sanctions in response to years of nuclear tests by Pyongyang. "Japan is happy, all of Asia is happy", the USA leader wrote.

North Korea appears to have started dismantling key facilities at its main satellite launch site in a step toward fulfilling a commitment made by leader Kim Jong Un at his summit with President Donald Trump in June.

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"As we have stated before, we are committed to building a peace mechanism with the goal of replacing the Armistice agreement when North Korea has denuclearized", the official added.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the country should feed its soldiers better, according to state media KCNA on Wednesday, after a defected North Korean soldier's health past year highlighted nutrition problems in the isolated state.

However, North Korea still has a very long way to go towards denuclearization.

Last week, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused North Korea of "illegally smuggling petroleum products into the country at a level that far exceeds quotas" established by the United Nations. Analysts say that will be hard while sanctions remain in place.

A report in The Washington Post at the weekend said in spite of positive assessments Mr Trump has given on progress with North Korea, he has vented anger at aides over a lack of immediate progress. He said inspectors should be on the ground inside North Korea to verify the moves - something Mr. Kim apparently has not allowed.

We are "working to bring back the remains of your brothers-in-arms who gave their lives in Korea", Trump said Tuesday.

Trump had vehemently denied reports he was frustrated with the pace of the negotiations, . tweeting on Monday that he was "very happy" with how they were going.

North Korea ‘begins dismantling’ rocket test site | #TheCube