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N. Korea reportedly preparing for possible ICBM test when Biden visits Asia this week
Updated: 2022-05-18 13:30:45 KST

Citing an unnamed U.S. official, CNN reported that North Korea appears to be preparing for a possible intercontinental ballistic missile test within the next 48 to 96 hours.
This is within the timeframe of U.S. President Joe Biden scheduled trip to Asia, as he plans to visit South Korea on Friday.
The source said things they have noticed in the run up to past launches are currently being seen, but did not provide specific details regarding current satellite imagery.
CNN said the launch site under satellite observation is located near Pyeongyang.

The North also appears to be continuing efforts to prepare for a nuclear test at its Punggye-ri nuclear facility.
CSIS, a U.S. think tank said continued activity outside and around the new portal for one of the tunnels was observed in satellite images on Tuesday.
It said the satellite images showed both the original portal destroyed in 2018 and the new portal under construction near Tunnel Number 3.
The think tank also said a probable compressor and pump house building is located around 45 meters from the new portal, and that several cables, most likely for power, compressor air, ventilation, and worksite communications, run straight from the building into the tunnel.
As for the main administration and support area of the nuclear facility, it said a new building is under construction in the northeastern corner, and vehicle tracks are visible throughout the lower courtyard.
Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department spokesperson said there isn't any expectation that North Korea will put its nuclear test on hold because of the COVID-19 outbreak, as the regime never prioritizes the humanitarian concerns of their own people over their destabilizing programs.

"they continue to invest untold sums in ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programs that do nothing to alleviate the humanitarian plight of the North Korean people. The DPRK leadership continues to enrich themselves to take care of their cronies while the people of the north of the DPRK suffer."

The remarks come as the State Department earlier assessed the North may conduct a nuclear test as early as this month.
Bae Eun-ji, Arirang News.
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