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North Korea claims nuclear test

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/asiapcf/10/08/korea.nuclear.test/index.html North Korea claims nuclear test POSTED: 12:14 a.m. EDT, October 9, 2006 SEOUL, South
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 8, 2006
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      http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/asiapcf/10/08/korea.nuclear.test/index.html

      North Korea claims nuclear test
      POSTED: 12:14 a.m. EDT, October 9, 2006

      SEOUL, South Korea (CNN) -- North Korea on Monday
      claimed it has performed a successful nuclear test,
      according to that country's official Korean Central
      News Agency (KCNA).

      South Korean government officials also said North
      Korea performed its first nuclear test, the South's
      Yonhap news agency reported.

      The apparent nuclear test was conducted at 10:36 a.m.
      (0136 GMT) in Hwaderi near Kilju city, Yonhap
      reported, citing defense officials.

      "The field of scientific research in the DPRK (North
      Korea's official name) successfully conducted an
      underground nuclear test under secure conditions on
      October 9 ... at a stirring time when all the people
      of the country are making a great leap forward in the
      building of a great prosperous powerful socialist
      nation," KCNA reported.

      Late Sunday in Washington, a U.S. military official
      told CNN that "something clearly has happened," but
      the Pentagon was working to fully confirm the report.

      Senior U.S. officials said they also believed the test
      took place, citing seismic data that appeared to show
      one.

      "The nuclear test was conducted with indigenous wisdom
      and technology 100 percent. It marks a historic event
      as it greatly encouraged and pleased the KPA (Korean
      People's Army) and people that have wished to have
      powerful self-reliant defense capability," KCNA
      reported.

      "It will contribute to defending the peace and
      stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the area
      around it."

      The U.S. Geological Survey's Rafael Abreau said the
      earthquake-measuring agency has not recorded any
      seismic activity from North Korea.

      However, South Korean intelligence officials said a
      seismic wave of magnitude-3.58 had been detected in
      North Hamkyung province, according to Yonhap.

      In Tokyo, the prime minister's office said Japan had
      set up a task force to address the situation.

      High-level South Korean officials were meeting Monday
      after intelligence of the suspected test was received.

      "President Roh Moo-hyun called in an emergency meeting
      of related ministers on Monday to discuss the North
      Korean nuclear issue," said Yonhap, quoting Foreign
      Ministry spokesman Choo Kyu-ho.

      "The meeting comes as there has been a grave change in
      the situation involving the North's nuclear activity."

      According to KCNA, there was no radioactive leakage
      from the site.

      On Friday, the U.N. Security Council warned North
      Korea against performing a nuclear test, citing
      unspecified action if it should do so.

      It also called on North Korea to return immediately to
      the six-party talks with China, Japan, South Korea,
      Russia and the United States.
      'Serious provocation'

      Citing American belligerence and pressure, North Korea
      said Tuesday that a nuclear test was in the works. A
      date and time for the test was not given.

      The report of the test came as Japan's new Prime
      Minister Shinzo Abe arrived in Seoul for meetings with
      President Roh Moo-hyun to address the nuclear issue as
      well as address strains in relations between the two
      countries over territorial and historical disputes.

      North Korea accused rival South Korea on Monday of
      committing a serious provocation by firing warning
      shots during a weekend incident in which the South
      says soldiers from the communist North crossed over
      their border.

      The border shooting came Saturday. South Korean
      soldiers rattled off about 40 warning shots after a
      group of five North Korean troops crossed into the
      southern side of the no-man's-land separating the
      divided Korean peninsula, South Korea said.

      No one was hurt in the incident.

      On Monday, members of the U.N. Security Council are
      expected to select South Korean Foreign Minister Ban
      Ki-moon to succeed Kofi Annan as secretary-general of
      the world body.

      In a straw poll last Monday, all but one of the 15
      council members supported that choice, according to
      Chinese Ambassador Wang Guangya.

      John Bolton, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations,
      refused to discuss the outcome of the vote, but said:
      "I think it was sufficiently clear that all members of
      the council agreed to move to a formal vote on Monday
      night," he said. The announcement would be made
      Tuesday, he said.

      CNN's Jamie McIntyre, Barbara Starr, Sohn Jie-ae and
      Elise Labott contributed to this report
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