North Korea Will Join Efforts for Total Ban on Nuclear Tests

Северная Корея разбирает Punggye-ri

North Korea's ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament says his country wants to join worldwide efforts to ban nuclear tests.

North Korea last conducted a weapons test past year, and intends to dismantle its only test site later this month.

Observers raised the possibility that North Korea could sign on to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), which has been ratified by 166 nations but has yet to take effect.

But despite the commitment, North Korea is not a member of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) as it withdrew in 2003.

The regime plans to close its nuclear test site next week.

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However, according to experts, "more significant buildings around the site are still untouched". "I wonder what the Iranians, for example, will make of it".

The CTBT is a multilateral treaty that bans all nuclear tests, for both civilian and military purposes.

But the remarks could also be an indicator of how North Korea views denuclearization, with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un saying on April 21 that a testing moratorium will help foster global disarmament.

North Korea has signaled its intention to disarm its nuclear program as part of broader peace deals, and with the upcoming closure of its test site has no reason not to back the test ban.

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