Speed Reads


A North Korean nuclear test site is reportedly unusable due to a recent collapse

North Korea's decision to cease nuclear tests may not have been wholly out of the benevolence of leader Kim Jong Un.

A major nuclear test facility in North Korea was damaged after the nation's latest detonation, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday, leaving it largely unusable.

Researchers in China found that a test blast in September caused a cavity in a mountain in northeast North Korea to collapse. Within that mountain is the Punggye-ri test facility. The collapse left North Korea with no choice but to close the site's doors to avoid an "environmental catastrophe," the researchers said.

North Korea has launched six nuclear tests, and the last was the largest. Seismologists have estimated that the blast caused a 6.3-magnitude tremor that likely collapsed underground infrastructure, the Journal reports. No nuclear contamination has been detected as a result of the incident, Chinese officials said.

The research was made public just days after Kim announced that he would pause North Korea's nuclear testing. President Trump considered it a piece of good news ahead of his planned summit with Kim, but experts say Kim's pledge may be a less meaningful concession if his test infrastructure was destroyed anyway. Read more at The Wall Street Journal.