U.S. Intel Reportedly Says North Korea is Building New Missiles As Trump Continues to Boast of Progress

The Trump administration downplayed reports Tuesday that North Korea is engaged in a flurry of new intercontinental ballistic missile activity, asserting the activity has not undermined President Trump's high-stakes diplomatic outreach to Pyongyang.

After a solemn ceremony at the USA military's Osan Air Base in South Korea, 55 boxes of remains draped in the United Nations flag were taken to a US military plane, which will then take them to a military laboratory in Hawaii for further analysis and identification.

In North Korea, officials have previously said they have the remains of as many as 200 us service members. The two aircraft earlier Wednesday had taken aboard the 55 cases, each draped in the flag of the United Nations Command, at Osan Air Base in South Korea.

The Department of Defense is beginning the long and hard task of identifying the remains turned over to the United States from North Korea. The commitments it made to President Trump were too vague to preclude such activity.

Pence arrived with his wife in Honolulu Wednesday along with several family members of Korean War veterans.

North Korean Lieutenant General An Ik San walks with South Korean Major General Kim Do-gyun at the Peace House of the border village of Panmunjom, South Korea, July 31, 2018.


Indeed, North Korean military officials did not claim that every item in each box went together, he said. The North Koreans collected the remains, and USA investigators will have to do the examination without the forensic information they normally would have, such as the approximate place of the burial and the conditions around it.

On Wednesday, the U.S. military held a repatriation ceremony at Osan air base in South Korea, where the boxes had arrived the previous week.

North Korea "is in the room as a member of the ASEAN regional forum among these 27 countries, so there will be discussions that are inclusive of North Korea", a senior State Department official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Service members from countries including Australia, Belgium, France and the Philippines also have not been recovered from North Korea.

Kim Jong Un committed to try to work toward the "complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula" during the summit in Singapore, but he agreed to no specific measures or timelines.

USA spy agencies say new satellite images indicate that North Korea is making missiles at the same factory that produced the country's first intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States.

North Korea has provided very little information to help identify the remains, a defense official told VOA.


"We too remain concerned" by North Korean violations of UN-approved sanctions, the USA official said.

Pompeo assured lawmakers that the U.S. was working toward finding a solution without easing its sanctions against North Korea, but also admitted during his testimony that it was "continuing to create fissile material".

"The Korean War fallen have never been forgotten by the United States of America", the UNC said in a statement. North Korea has steadfastly argued its nuclear weapons are meant to neutralize alleged U.S. plans to attack it.

The agency identifies remains of servicemen killed in past conflicts.

DPAA deputy director Rear Admiral Jon Kreitz said he saw the remains transfer as an important step that will lead to more recovery operations in North Korea. "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea".


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