North Korea’s largest and most important nuclear research facilities remain well-maintained and operational, the monitor site 38 North revealed this week.
Citing images taken in December, the site’s analysts say facilities at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center do not appear to be currently in use, apart from a uranium enrichment plant.
“Commercial satellite imagery of North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center from December 2018 indicates that while the site remains operational and is still well maintained, the main facilities do not appear to be operating,” write analysts Frank V. Pabian and Jack Liu.
“The one possible exception is the Uranium Enrichment Plant (UEP), although if it is operating, in what capacity remains unclear.”
The imagery underlines the growing evidence that North Korea is doing little to downgrade their nuclear threat amid peace negotiations with South Korea and the United States, and in some cases ramping up research and production.