South Korea’s cabinet is holding an emergency meeting this morning after it detected an “artificial earthquake” in North Korea, a sign that the nation may have conducted a test explosion of an atomic weapon. Those fears were later confirmed by North Korea’s Central News Agency (KCNA), which confirmed that the nation conducted its second underground nuclear test at approximately 10:00 am Monday local time (roughly 9 pm Sunday EST). The seismic activity detected was similar to the October 2006 test. The South Korean stock exchange plummeted over the news. Yet the news was not entirely shocking, as South Korean officials said they had detected “brisk” activityat the nation’s nuclear test site earlier this month. US special envoy Stephen Bosworth has vowed that “there will be consequences.” North Korea pulled out of 6-party talks last month after the United Nations condemned them for what they claimed was a satellite launch but which the West dubbed a “missile test.” The nation ordered International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors out and said it was preparing new nuclear tests.
N Korea stages 2nd 'more powerful' nuke test
North Korea says it has carried out a "successful" underground nuclear weapons test, according to the Korean Central News Agency. The North "successfully conducted one more underground nuclear test on May 25 as part of the measures to bolster up its nuclear deterrent for self-defense in every way as requested by its scientists and technicians," the news agency said on Monday. "The current nuclear test was safely conducted on a new higher level in terms of its explosive power and technology of its control," it added. The test would "contribute to defending the sovereignty of the country and the nation and socialism and ensuring peace and security on the Korean peninsula and the region around it with the might of Songun (the North's army-first policy)." No details of the location of the test have been given yet. According to South Korean officials, a tremor was detected around the northeastern town of Kilju, near where the first test was conducted in October 2006. The US Geological Survey announced that it detected what it called a 4.7-magnitude earthquake in North Korea on Monday. The tremor struck at 9:54 am (0054 GMT), 375 kilometers (230 miles) northeast of Pyongyang at a depth of just 10 kilometers, it said