Powell says blast consistent with North Korea’s explanation
WASHINGTON: The United States said on Tuesday a blast in North Korea last week that stirred fears of a nuclear explosion might have been demolition work for a power project, as Pyongyang has asserted.
The US assessment rebuts speculation among analysts and the media in neighboring South Korea that the blast was related to military activity in the reclusive state, which the United States accuses of pursuing nuclear weapons.
“The information they gave is consistent with what we saw, that it might have been demolition work for a hydroelectric facility,” Secretary of State Colin Powell told Reuters.
Powell complained North Korea was stalling on coming to a fresh round of talks originally planned for this month with South Korea, China, Japan and Russia.
North Korea has questioned the value of continuing the six-way negotiations and avoided committing to a date for a new round.
Russia said on Tuesday there was no hope of holding a fourth round this month, the Interfax news agency reported. reuters