Tags: north korea | nuclear production | kim jong un | president donald trump

US Intel Officials: NKorea Secretly Upping Nuke Production

US Intel Officials: NKorea Secretly Upping Nuke Production

Command post facilities of North Korea's nuclear test site are exploded in Punggye-ri, North Korea on Thursday, May 24, 2018., prior to the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump. (Korea Pool/Yonhap via AP)

By    |   Friday, 29 June 2018 08:26 PM

North Korea may be engaged in an international game of "hide and seek," according to U.S. intelligence agencies, NBC News reported Friday.

According to NBC sources, North Korea may be upping its production of weapons-grade nuclear material at secret sites, and its leader, Kim Jong Un, will keep both the production and the location of those sites under wraps while seeking concessions from the U.S.

North Korea is apparently enlarging a nuclear research facility, according to a previously unreported intelligence assessment, prompting the question "why" if they're in the process of denuclearization.

If the assessment is confirmed, it would run counter to a statement President Donald Trump made after his unprecedented meeting with the North Korean leader.

"Everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office," Trump said on Twitter shortly after arriving back in Washington. "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea."

The president reported after that summit:

Intelligence officials familiar with the assessment told the network on condition of anonymity that in their opinion, North Korea was ramping up its nuclear capability while at the same time squeezing the U.S. for concessions.

At the same time, the Hermit Kingdom has halted all testing of nuclear devices and ballistic missiles, "there's no evidence that they are decreasing stockpiles, or that they have stopped their production," one U.S. official told NBC News. "There is absolutely unequivocal evidence that they are trying to deceive the U.S."

The intelligence assessment appears to confirm a 38north.org report indicating North Korea's ongoing improvements at a Yongbyon nuclear facility.

"The observed activity appears inconsistent with a North Korean intent to abandon its nuclear weapons programs," said Bruce Klingner, a former CIA analyst and North Korea expert at the Heritage Foundation. "There seems little reason to continue expansion plans if the regime intended to dismantle them as would be required under a denuclearization agreement."

This assessment wasn't universal, however. A senior intelligence official told the network that although he expects Kim to make attempts at deception, he saw the current negotiations as a good sign.

"Work is ongoing to deceive us on the number of facilities, the number of weapons, the number of missiles," he said. "We are watching closely."

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North Korea may be engaged in an international game of "hide and seek," according to U.S. intelligence agencies, NBC News reported Friday. According to NBC sources, North Korea may be upping its production of weapons-grade nuclear material at secret sites, and its leader,...
north korea, nuclear production, kim jong un, president donald trump
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2018-26-29
Friday, 29 June 2018 08:26 PM
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