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New satellite images find North Korean nuclear test site taken over by volleyball games

The latest satellite images of a North Korean nuclear test site revealed very unexpected activity. Amid rising tensions between Pyongyang and Washington and a possible nuclear test looming, people at the Punggye-ri test site appeared to be relaxing Sunday with a game of volleyball, U.S. experts told Reuters. "We see that at three locations in the facility — in the main administrative area, at the support area, at the command center and at the guard barracks near the command center — they have volleyball games going on," said Joe Bermudez, an expert at an independent North Korea monitoring project.

Experts aren't entirely sure why North Koreans were bumping, setting, and spiking, rather than preparing for nuclear testing. One theory is that the test site is "going into 'a standby mode,'" Reuters reported. Or, Bermudez noted, the games could all be an elaborate ruse to confuse anyone observing the site.

The satellite images did show some signs of "tunneling work" indicative of an impending underground explosion, but Reuters reported there was "no active pumping of water out of the tunnel system used for nuclear testing." North Korea has conducted several tests in recent months, and officials in the U.S. and South Korea have warned another test could happen soon.