Summary of external news of North Korea this week

SEOUL, Nov. 26 (Yonhap) — The following is a summary of external news of North Korea this week.

Seoul monitoring N. Korea’s nuclear, missile activities: unification ministry

SEOUL — South Korea is monitoring North Korea’s nuclear and missile activities in close cooperation with the United States, the unification ministry said Friday, following reports the North appears to be continuing the operation of a nuclear reactor at its mainstay Yongbyon complex.

38 North, a U.S. monitoring website, said Wednesday steam was detected emanating from the 5-megawatt reactor in an indication at least one generator is in operation, citing recent satellite imagery.

(2nd LD) Satellite imagery indicates continued operation of N.K. nuclear reactor: 38 North

SEOUL — North Korea appears to be continuing the operation of a plutonium-producing nuclear reactor at its mainstay Yongbyon complex, a U.S. monitoring website has said, citing the release of steam and water seen in recent satellite imagery.

38 North reported Wednesday (local time) that recent commercial satellite imagery of the complex north of Pyongyang provided further evidence of activity at the 5-megawatt reactor, which can produce up to 6 kilograms of plutonium — a fissile material used for a nuclear bomb — a year.

Former Chinese ambassador says Beijing supports efforts for end-of-war declaration

SEOUL — The former Chinese envoy in South Korea said Wednesday Beijing supports efforts to declare a formal end to the Korean War as one of the signatories to the armistice agreement that effectively ended the 1950-53 conflict.

Qiu Guohong, who served as ambassador to Seoul from 2014 to 2019, expressed hope the end-of-war declaration, if realized, will help further reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula and resume talks with North Korea.

Assembly speaker meets WHO chief to discuss vaccines, N. Korea aid

SEOUL — National Assembly Speaker Park Byeong-seug met with the World Health Organization (WHO) chief to discuss cooperation on vaccines and humanitarian aid to North Korea, his office said Wednesday.

During the meeting with WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Park also emphasized that South Korea is the “optimal location” for a bio and vaccine workforce development hub planned by the WHO, the office said.