North Korea: South Korean intelligence confirmed on 8 October that North Korea has restarted its 5MWe nuclear reactor at Yongbyon. The National Intelligence Service (NIS) told lawmakers from the National Assembly's Intelligence Committee that the graphite-moderated reactor has been in operation since around August of this year.
Comment: The South Koreans are the first government to confirm what has already been reported by the experts at Johns Hopkins. The US has made no statement of confirmation.
NightWatch has reported in several editions that North Korea's charm offensive was ending. The start of the change corresponds to the renewed push for Six Party nuclear talks. Since July the North has tested a large rocket engine and restarted the Yongbyon reactor. Uranium enrichment has certainly continued. Those developments form the backdrop for new talks.
North Korea-US: On 7 October, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) broadcast a statement in reaction to the arrival of the USS George Washington at Pusan (Busan), South Korea. (Bold font added by NightWatch.)
"The situation on the Korean Peninsula, which had been easing as a result of our patient efforts, is once again rushing straight toward deterioration. Such a trend of the situationis directly attributed to the continuous anti-Republic military confrontation maneuvers of the US and Japanese aggressors and the South Korean puppets."
"As already reported, at dawn on 4 October, a nuclear-powered carrier strike group of the Navy of the US imperialist forces of aggression, which participated in the combined maritime exercises secretly aiming at our Republic that have been underway in the East Sea of Korea (the Sea of Japan) since 30 September, once again made its way into Busan Port."
"This strike group is composed of the super-large nuclear-powered carrier USS George Washington carrying about 100 nuclear bombs aboard, countless guided-missile destroyers, cruisers, submarines, escort warships, and the like…."
"The gravity of the situation lies in that all continuing military movements have been timed to coincide with the adoption of what is called tailored deterrence strategy premised on a preemptive strike on us between the master and its tool.
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