North Korea earthquake linked to nuclear test
Aseries of tremors and landslides near North Korea’s nuclear test base likely mean the country’s sixth and largest blast has destabilised the region, and the Punggye-ri nuclear site may not be used for much longer to test nuclear weapons, experts say.
A small quake was detected early yesterday near the North’s nuclear test site, South Korea’s weather agency said, but unlike quakes associated with nuclear tests, it did not appear to be manmade. The tremor was the latest in a string of at least three shocks to be observed since Pyongyang’s September 3 nuclear test, which caused a 6.3 magnitude earthquake.
The quake was a magnitude 2.7 with a depth of 3km in North Hamgyong Province in North Korea, the Korea Meteorological Administration said. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) measured the quake at 2.9 magnitude at a depth of 5km.
The series of quakes has prompted experts and observers to suspect the last test may have damaged the mountainous location in the northwest tip of the country, where all six nuclear tests were conducted.