38 North: Signs of Activity at Facilities in Yongbyon Complex
A United States website specializing in North Korea analysis reported that some facilities at the North's main nuclear complex in Yongbyon appeared to have resumed operations.
38 North presented the analysis on Wednesday, citing commercial satellite imagery from Tuesday by Maxar Technologies.
The website said that the images indicate a steam plant that provides heat to the Radiochemical Laboratory at the nuclear site is in operation after a nearly two-year hiatus.
Smoke is reportedly seen emanating from the plant’s smokestack at various times in late February and early March, suggesting that preparations for spent fuel reprocessing could be under way to extract plutonium needed for North Korea’s nuclear weapons.
However, 38 North said that this could also mean simply the facility is being prepped to handle radioactive waste.
[Photo : YONHAP News]