Kim Jong-un “strengthens defense” according to expert
The group of buildings called Kangson located at the southwestern edge of the capital Pyongyang could be crucial for the production of atomic bombs. Establishing its target is critical to measuring the scale of the hermit state’s nuclear capability. It operates all year round because the snowmelt is visible on the roof.
On Saturday, Kim announced to the Korean Workers’ Party’s first Congress in five years his intention to build smaller and lighter nuclear weapons, according to the state-run KCNA news agency.
He said North Korea’s goal was to “subdue” the United States, which he described as its “greatest enemy,” and said that “the search for a nuclear-powered submarine was over ”.
He also indicated his intention to produce large rockets capable of hitting targets 9,320 miles away. Washington DC is 10,857 km from Pyongyang.
Kim Jong-un announced ambitious new nuclear plans
Satellite image of Kangson
He said, “There is great confidence that the Kangson facility plays a role in North Korea’s nuclear program, but there is disagreement over the role.
“There is strong evidence, including official mentions, that this is a uranium enrichment plant, but there is also a counter-argument that it plays a different role – perhaps the production of centrifuges or other equipment necessary for enrichment.
“The first indication comes from the fact that Kangson was built from 2001 to 2003, and this matches the information made public about a new nuclear-related facility that was also built at the same time.
“Another indication is that Kangson is one of the largest industrial complexes in the Kangson area.
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TV news showing footage of North Korean missile test
“The satellite images of winter also show that Kangson is operating year round, as the snow is melting on the roof is visible.”
Yongbyon is North Korea’s main nuclear facility, located 100 km north of Pyongyang.
It is surrounded by more than 30 anti-aircraft artillery batteries. The Kim family’s main palace in the capital is surrounded by nearly 20 people, while the Pyongsan uranium mine and processing plant are protected by seven.
U.S. intelligence agencies learned of Kangson in 2010.
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North Korea is going through an economic crisis made worse by the closure of its border with China due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Edward Howell, professor of politics and specialist on North Korea at the University of Oxford, said Express.co.uk: “We shouldn’t be surprised if more nuclear and long-range missile tests take place in 2021, but at the same time, is it really in Kim Jong-un’s best interests to conduct such provocations so soon after Biden’s inauguration as president?
“It is not unlikely that the DPRK will decide to wait and see a more concrete materialization of the policies of the Biden administration.
People walk through Pyongyang on January 1, 2021
“At the same time, the dire economic situation could mean that Pyongyang may seek to improve relations with the United States, especially for economic benefits. ”
Analysts on Project 38 North released a report on Kangson last month.
They believe the satellite images indicate the facility for manufacturing components for the centrifuges. These are the high-tech spinners used to enrich uranium.