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(LEAD) N.K. may fire ICBM toward North Pacific: Seoul spy agency

2017/09/04 16:48

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SEOUL, Sept. 4 (Yonhap) -- North Korea may fire an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) toward the North Pacific following its sixth nuclear test, South Korea's spy agency was quoted by a lawmaker as saying Monday.

The National Intelligence Service (NIS) also told lawmakers that more analysis is needed to verify whether the North detonated an electromagnetic pulse-based bomb or a hydrogen bomb during its nuclear test on Sunday.

"There is a possibility that the North could make additional provocations by firing an ICBM toward the North Pacific," Kim Byung-kee, a ruling party lawmaker, told reporters after the agency's closed session.

North Korea claimed Sunday it had a successful test of an H-bomb that can be mounted on an ICBM. North Korea fired two ICBMs in July.

The NIS said that the latest detonation was conducted in a northern tunnel of its nuclear site in the northeastern area where Pyongyang carried out three tests.

Since 2006, the North has conducted six nuclear tests, including two last year. The 2006 test was conducted in an eastern tunnel, which was later closed, and the fifth bomb was detonated in an auxiliary tunnel from the northern one in September 2016.

"As North Korea has completed the construction of the third tunnel and another one is under construction, it can carry out another nuclear test at any time," the agency said.

Pyongyang appears to raise tensions and bolster internal solidarity as it is set to mark the anniversary of the regime's establishment slated for Saturday and the creation of the ruling Workers' Party of Korea on Oct. 10., it added.

sooyeon@yna.co.kr

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