North Korea inspects border after defector returns from South with coronavirus symptoms

North Korea inspects border after defector returns from South with coronavirus symptoms”

Kim was addressing a conference of veterans on the 67th anniversary of the 1953 armistice that ended Korean War hostilities, the official Korean Central News Agency said.

"Thanks to our reliable and effective self-defense nuclear deterrence, the word war would no longer exist on this land, and the security and future of our state will be guaranteed forever", the North Korean leader said in his speech.

An arrest warrant reportedly was issued for Kim later that week, but he had already made it back into North Korea.

According to Chinese state media outlet Xinhua News Agency, Kim Hyun Chong, deputy director of the National Security Office (NSO) of the Blue House, revealed during a Tuesday news briefing that the revised guidelines lift restrictions on the use of solid fuel for space launch vehicles.

Kim and President Donald Trump have met on separate occasions to negotiate an end to North Korea's nuclear program, but have failed to reach an agreement.

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The measures come after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared an emergency on Sunday after a person who defected to South Korea three years ago returned across the highly fortified demilitarized zone (DMZ) to Kaesong this month with symptoms of COVID-19, KCNA reported.

But Secretary of State Mike Pompeo appeared to pour cold water on the possibility of another USA summit with North Korea, saying Trump only wanted to engage if there was a likelihood of real progress.

Lee Choon Geun, a missile expert at South Korea's Science and Technology Policy Institute, also told AP that South Korea could use low-Earth-orbit surveillance satellites to monitor North Korea, which has more advanced missile capabilities than the South.

A United Nations special rapporteur has expressed concern about the South Korean government's restrictions on activist groups, including those run by North Korean defectors. There are 15 laboratories designated to test COVID-19 in the country.

If confirmed, it would be the first case officially acknowledged by DPRK authorities, who have so far said the country has no confirmed cases of the new coronavirus.

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