NEWS
29/04/2018 09:51 BST | Updated 30/04/2018 13:30 BST

North Korea ‘To Close Nuclear Site’ In May - And Invite Foreign Observers To Witness It

Experts have said that the Punggye-ri test site has mostly been rendered useless.

North Korea’s nuclear test site will shut in May and reveal the process to experts and journalists from South Korea and the United States, South Korea’s presidential office has said.

On Friday, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in vowed “complete denuclearisation” of the Korean peninsula in the first inter-Korean summit in more than a decade.

Seoul said Kim has said Donald Trump will get to know he is “not a person” to aim missiles at US.

Referring to preparations for a summit between the leaders, the US president earlier tweeted that “things are going very well”.

North Korea’s state media had said before the summit that Pyongyang would immediately suspend nuclear and missile tests, scrap its nuclear test site and instead pursue economic growth and peace.

Kim told Moon that he would soon invite the experts and journalists to “open to the international community” the dismantling of the facilities, the Blue House said.

“The United States, though inherently hostile to North Korea, will get to know once our talk begins that I am not the kind of person who will use nuclear weapons against the South or the United States across the Pacific,” Moon’s press secretary Yoon Young-chan quoted Kim as saying, Reuters reports.

“There is no reason for us to possess nuclear weapons while suffering difficulties if mutual trust with the United States is built through frequent meetings from now on, and an end to the war and non-aggression are promised.”

Experts have said that the Punggye-ri test site has mostly been rendered useless following repeated explosions. Scientists have said that the site might have partially collapsed in September.

In his conversation with Moon, Kim denied that he would be merely clearing out damaged goods, saying that the site also has two new tunnels that are larger than previous testing facilities, Yoon said.

Kim’s promise shows his willingness to “preemptively and actively” respond to inspection efforts to be made as part of the denuclearisation process, Yoon said.

Seoul also said that North Korea plans to match time zones with its southern neighbour and historic adversary.

Kim pledged to scrap the unique time zone Pyongyang created in 2015. He said the North would move its clocks forward 30 minutes to be in sync with the South, nine hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.

Kim also reaffirmed that he would not use military force against the South and raised the need for an institutional mechanism to prevent unintended escalations, Yoon said.