North Korea may ramp up nuke threat against US
SEOUL: North Korea may conduct additional missile tests this year to polish up its long-range missile technology and ramp up the threat against the United States, South Korea's spy agency said on Monday, adding that it was monitoring developments closely.
North Korea is pursuing nuclear weapons and missile programmes in defiance of UN Security Council sanctions and has made no secret of its plans to develop a missile capable of hitting the US mainland. It has fired two missiles over Japan.
The reclusive state appears to have carried out a recent missile engine test while brisk movements of vehicles were spotted near known missile facilities, Yi Wan-young, a member of South Korea's parliamentary intelligence committee which was briefed by Seoul's National Intelligence Service, said.
No sign of an imminent nuclear test had been detected, Yi noted. The third tunnel at the Punggye-ri complex remained ready for another detonation "at any time", while construction had recently resumed at a fourth tunnel, making it out of use for the time being.