Posted May. 10, 2005 23:14,
A high-profile government official said yesterday, According to consultation and information exchanges with the U.S., we have detected no specific sign that North Korea is preparing for a nuclear test.
Regarding the New York Times recent report that Pyongyang is preparing for a nuclear test, the official stated the above and added, We have neither received any relevant information from the U.S. intelligence agency nor confirmed such a claim.
He commented on Gilju in North Hamgyeong Province in North Korea, which is being discussed as a preparation spot for nuclear experiments, and stressed that it is a region Korea and the U.S. have been paying keen attention to after picking up some signs of drift work and dump truck movement several years ago. No such thing as a satellite picture currently showing new movements in the region to suspect that the North is preparing for a nuclear experiment exists.
To illustrate, there were signs of drift work and hole digging in the Kumchang-ri crisis in 1998, but we found nothing when we went there to confirm our suspicions.
Also, regarding the tunnel plugging and the building of an inspection platform, which was suggested as evidence for the Norths preparation for a nuclear experiment, the official said, We have not been notified of anything like that. Considering various circumstances, tunnel plugging does not directly link itself with nuclear experiments (even if it may be true).