North Korea is preparing for a third atomic test that may come in May or June, South Korean broadcaster YTN reported, an act that could further isolate Pyongyang and complicate already troubled nuclear diplomacy.
South Korean Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan dismissed the report, saying Seoul had seen no evidence.
“If North Korea was making such preparations, there would be related circumstances that can be detected ... there is no intelligence on such circumstances,” Yu told a news briefing.
The preparations began in February and involve a level of technical proficiency that is significantly upgraded from the first two tests, considered partial successes at best, YTN quoted an unnamed diplomat as saying.
North Korea has boycotted international nuclear disarmament talks for over a year and put conditions on its return.