Foreign journalists in North Korea have been told to prepare for a “big and important event” on Thursday, The Hill reported Wednesday afternoon. It’s not known exactly what is happening on Thursday, but the announcement came on the same day that an influential state-backed Chinese newspaper warned Pyongyang that America is not bluffing.
According to The Hill:
North Korean officials provided no details about the nature of the event or its location, according to a report by Reuters.
200 foreign journalists are in Pyongyang ahead of the nation’s biggest national holiday, the “Day of the Sun.”
This year’s holiday, which is celebrated annually on April 15, will mark the 105th anniversary of the birth of Kim Il Sung, the deceased founding leader of North Korea and the grandfather of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Reuters said the event turned out to be “the opening of a new street in the center of the capital, attended by Kim.”
An article at the Global Times said that North Korea “likes to launch nuclear activities as a political salute around this date. Therefore, April is widely seen as a high-risk period for new nuclear tests by North Korea.”
The Chinese outlet added:
The US aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson is headed toward the Korean Peninsula after abruptly turning back from sailing to Australia, and Trump sent a warning via his tweet. These are probably related to reports that satellite surveillance shows North Korea is likely to conduct new nuclear tests.
Washington’s latest threat to Pyongyang is more credible given its just launched missile attack at an air base in Syria. The Korean Peninsula has never been so close to a military clash since the North conducted its first nuclear test in 2006.
If Pyongyang conducts its sixth nuclear test in the near future, the possibility of US military action against it will be higher than ever. Not only Washington brimming with confidence and arrogance following the missile attacks on Syria, but Trump is also willing to be regarded as a man who honors his promises.
The op-ed continued:
The US is making up its mind to stop the North from conducting further nuclear tests, it doesn’t plan to co-exist with a nuclear-armed Pyongyang.
China supports solution of the North Korean nuclear issue under the framework of UNSC and Six-Party Talks. If the US takes unilateral action, it will win little international support. Pyongyang can continue its tough stance, however, for its own security, it should at least halt provocative nuclear and missile activities.
Pyongyang should avoid making mistakes at this time.
Reporters in the country have issued tweets indicating that they have no idea what to expect on Thursday:
— Jeremy Koh (@JeremyKohCNA) April 12, 2017
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) April 12, 2017
— Jean H. Lee (@newsjean) April 13, 2017
The reporters were told they could not take lighters, cell phones or laptops, according to @nknewsorg
— Anna Fifield (@annafifield) April 12, 2017
Reuters further reported:
A Washington-based think tank that monitors North Korea, 38 North, said satellite images taken on Wednesday showed continued activity around the North’s Punggye-ri nuclear test site on the east coast that showed it was ready for a new test.
South Korean officials said on Thursday there were no new signs to indicate a North Korean nuclear test was more likely, although they also said the North has maintained a state of readiness to conduct such a test at any time.
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- North Korean despot Kim Jong-Un feeds uncle to pack of ravenous dogs
- North Korea to progressives: Join us in war against U.S.
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