North Korea to suspend nuclear and missile tests, abolish test site

Vastavam web: North Korea will immediately suspend nuclear and missile tests and abolish a nuclear test site in a bid to pursue economic growth and peace on the Korean peninsula, the North’s state media said on Saturday, ahead of planned summits with South Korea and the United States.North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said his country no longer needed to conduct nuclear tests or intercontinental ballistic missile tests because it has completed its goal of developing nuclear weapons, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.

It marked the first time North Korea directly addressed its nuclear weapons programmes and comes ahead of Kim’s planned summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in next week and a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in late May or early June.“The northern nuclear test ground of the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) will be dismantled to transparently guarantee the discontinuance of the nuclear test,” KCNA said after Kim convened a plenary session of the Central Committee of the ruling Worker’s Party on Friday.

Trump welcomed the statement and said he looked forward to a summit with Kim. “North Korea has agreed to suspend all Nuclear Tests and close up a major test site. This is very good news for North Korea and the World – big progress! Look forward to our Summit,” Trump said on Twitter.South Korea said the North’s decision signified “meaningful” progress toward denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and would create favourable conditions for successful meetings with it and the United States.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he welcomed North Korea’s statement but it must lead to verifiable denuclearisation.