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N. Korea continued nuclear activities in 2019: U.S. State Department

All News 07:09 April 18, 2020

By Lee Haye-ah

WASHINGTON, April 17 (Yonhap) -- North Korea continued nuclear activities last year in violation of its commitments to abandon all nuclear programs, the U.S. State Department has said.

In a summarized report to Congress Wednesday, the department also said North Korea has likely had a biological warfare program since at least the 1960s.

The report discusses U.S. and other nations' compliance last year with various arms control and nonproliferation agreements.

"North Korea's continuing nuclear activities make clear that it ... has not adhered to its commitments in the 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks to abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs, and to return at an early date to the NPT and IAEA safeguards," the department said, referring to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The U.S. also assesses that North Korea has an offensive biological warfare program in violation of its obligations under the Biological Weapons Convention.

"Although the United States has fragmented insight into North Korea's offensive BW program, continued reporting illustrates that North Korea has BW capabilities intended for use to counter U.S. and South Korean military superiority," the department said.

This AFP file photo shows the U.S. Department of State in Washington. (Yonhap)

hague@yna.co.kr
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