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South Korea says quake in North Korea was not result of blast

South Korea says quake in North Korea was not result of blast

Two seismic events recorded in North Korea were probably aftershocks from the state's missile test on 3 September, experts say.

A USA intelligence official and US -based non-governmental experts said their initial assessment was that the quake was either natural or connected to North Korea's latest and largest nuclear test on Sept.3, and not caused by a new nuclear test.

The women leaders also urge the UN Secretary-General to take seriously North Korea's security concerns by supporting a widely backed proposal for North Korea to freeze its nuclear and missile tests in exchange for the United States and South Korea halting its annual war drills, the world's largest ever, which rehearse surgical strikes against North Korea, "decapitation", and regime change.

The exercises were meant to underscore "the seriousness with which we take DPRK's reckless behavior", White said, using an acronym for North Korea.

China had reported earlier Saturday that the quake was likely caused by an explosion, raising fears that North Korea had conducted a fresh nuclear test.

Washington announced tougher restrictions Friday aimed at curbing North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programme, building on tough new United Nations sanctions aimed at choking Pyongyang of cash.

The tougher stance follows North Korea's latest nuclear test this month.

The U.S. Geological Survey and Japan's Meteorological Agency both detected the tremor but said they could not judge the cause.

The site affected by the quake is close to where North Korea conducted its last and most powerful nuclear test earlier this month.

China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi told the council it is "a practical way out" and stressed that China had "made tireless efforts for settlement to the North Korean issue".

Donald Trump has threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea, in a bellicose first address to the United Nations General Assembly.

Trump called North Korean leader Kim Jong Un a "madman" on Friday, a day after Kim dubbed him a "mentally deranged USA dotard" who would face the "highest level of hard-line countermeasure in history" in retaliation for Trump saying the U.S. would "totally destroy" North Korea if it threatened the United States or its allies.

China is North Korea's most important trading partner, and one of its only sources of hard currency.

Hours before, Trump had announced issuance of a new Executive Order that expands sanctions of US against maritime transport, banking, ports and manufacturing of North Korea.

A senior USA diplomat says a North Korean hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific would be an "unprecedented act of aggression" by the communist nation.

There are suspicions that the natural disaster was caused by settling in the wake of the most recent nuclear test.

China's Big Four state-owned banks have stopped providing financial services to new North Korean clients, Reuters reported last week, with some measures beginning as early as the end of previous year.

Stanford News Service interviewed two Stanford experts about the escalating situation between the two countries and what options leaders have on the table when it comes to North Korea.

"The United States is still taking an attitude of skepticism toward North Korea's nuclear capabilities", Lewis said.


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