N.Korea conducts nuclear test - South Korea defence ministry

SEOUL Tue Feb 12, 2013 10:09am IST

1 of 3. North Korean soldiers (background) take pictures, as a South Korean soldier (R) stands guard, after a ceremony marking the 59th anniversary of the signing of the armistice agreement that ended the Korean War on July 27, 1953, at the border villages of Panmunjom July 27, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Ahn Young-joon/Pool/Files

Related Topics

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea conducted a nuclear test on Tuesday, South Korea's defence ministry said, after seismic activity measuring 4.9 magnitude was registered by the U.S. Geological Survey.

The epicentre of the seismic activity, which was only one km below the Earth's surface, was close to the North's known nuclear test site.

"We've been informed by the South Koreans that there's been a (North Korean) nuclear test," a U.N. Security Council diplomat told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

An international nuclear test monitoring agency said the location of the seismic event was "roughly congruent with" 2006 and 2008 tests carried out by the reclusive state and had "clear explosion-like characteristics".

North Korea, which had been threatening a third nuclear test, had informed Beijing and Washington on Monday of plans to undertake a test, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported.

The isolated state, which is banned under U.N. Security Council resolutions from developing nuclear and missile technology, did not make any immediate comment.

North Korea is not prone to seismic activity and it may take hours or even days to determine officially whether a nuclear test had been conducted.

South Korea's defence ministry said the North Korean seismic event could be the result of a 6-7 kiloton or stronger nuclear blast. South Korea's President Lee Myung-bak called a national security council meeting for 0400 GMT.

North Korea successfully launched a long-range rocket in December in violation of U.N. resolutions that banned it from developing missile or nuclear technology after nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009.

It announced plans for a third nuclear test in response to the sanctions imposed in January after the rocket launch, although satellite imagery indicated it has been readying its test site for more than a year. (Reporting by David Chance; Editing by Michael Perry and Paul Tait)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Press Event

Press Event

Modi takes tea, but no questions, in first press event as PM.  Full Article 

School Shooting

School Shooting

Two killed, four wounded in Washington state school shooting.  Full Article 

Sundar Pichai Elevated

Sundar Pichai Elevated

Google's Pichai to oversee major products and services.  Full Article 

Need For Reforms

Need For Reforms

Euro zone risks "relapse into recession" without structural reforms - Draghi.  Full Article 

Diwali Sales

Diwali Sales

Gold sales jump about 20 pct for Diwali - trade body  Full Article 

World Bank Rival

World Bank Rival

Three major nations absent as China launches W.Bank rival in Asia  Full Article 

Wal-Mart India

Wal-Mart India

Murali Lanka appointed as Wal-Mart India operations chief  Full Article 

Health Of Lenders

Health Of Lenders

25 European banks set to fail health checks - sources.  Full Article 

India Insight

India Insight

Kalki Koechlin on her role as a disabled girl in “Margarita, With a Straw”  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage