New photos taken of a North Korean shipyard suggest the country could be building a submarine that could potentially be capable of launching a nuclear missile, a report early Tuesday said.
The photos show vessels and cranes that could be used to haul a missile out to sea for launch, according to experts at a Washington-based think tank, NBC News reported.
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The satellite photos seem to confirm North Korean state media reports from July about a newly built submarine.
“There is no conclusive evidence at the moment that this is a near-term certainty,” an expert said of a possible missile test.
Once a submarine is built, it would take at least a year before it’s ready, according to an expert.
“The construction and commissioning of a true SSB (ballistic missile submarine) capability would represent a significant advancement of the North Korean ballistic missile and nuclear threat and complicate defense planning in the region, given the difficulties of tracking and/or pre-emptively targeting such capabilities,” analysts said and would lower the chances of denuclearization.
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In the last year, 15 cranes have been installed at the shipyard, NBC reported.