North Korea develops miniaturised nuclear devices: UN report

North Korean Leader, Kim Jong Un
North Korean Leader, Kim Jong Un

By Reuters via NAN

North Korea is pressing on with its nuclear weapons program, according to a confidential U.N. report, scooped by Reuters.

According to the report, several countries believe the isolated country has “probably developed miniaturised nuclear devices to fit into the warheads of its ballistic missiles,”

The report by an independent panel of experts monitoring U.N. sanctions said the countries, which it did not identify, believed North Korea’s past six nuclear tests had likely helped it develop miniaturised nuclear devices.

Pyongyang has not conducted a nuclear test since September 2017.

The interim report was submitted to the 15-member U.N. Security Council North Korea sanctions committee on Monday.

“The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is continuing its nuclear program, including the production of highly enriched uranium and construction of an experimental light water reactor. A Member State assessed that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is continuing production of nuclear weapons,” the report said.

North Korea is formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

The report said one country, which it did not identify, assessed that North Korea “may seek to further develop miniaturisation in order to allow incorporation of technological improvements such as penetration aid packages or, potentially, to develop multiple warhead systems.”

North Korea has been subjected to U.N. sanctions since 2006 over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

While the Security Council has steadily strengthened sanctions, U.N. monitors regularly report that North Korea continues to enhance its programs and violate sanctions.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump have met three times since 2018.

But they failed to make progress on U.S. calls for Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons and North Korea’s demands for an end to sanctions.