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North Korea starts dismantling nuclear test site


North Korea had planned to ‘completely’ destroy the Punggye-ri facility in the country’s northeast, a move welcomed by Washington and Seoul
North Korea has carried out what it says is the demolition of its nuclear test site in the presence of foreign journalists.
The demolition happened Thursday at the site deep in the mountains of the North’s sparsely populated northeast.
Punggye-ri has been the staging ground for all six of the North’s nuclear tests, including its latest and by far most powerful one in September last year, which Pyongyang said was an H-bomb.
South Korean reporters on Wednesday joined a small group of Chinese and other foreign media outlets to cover the event after Pyongyang ended its days-long refusal to acknowledge their participation.
The demolition had been due to take place sometime between Thursday and Friday, depending on the weather.
The North has portrayed the move as a goodwill gesture ahead of a planned June 12 summit between Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump in Singapore.
But the new-found bonhomie and the meeting’s potential success has been thrown into doubt in recent days with both Washington and Pyongyang raising the prospect of cancelling the talks and trading threats.
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