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Jon Passantino Verified account @passantino
Big news KCNA: Kim Jong Un announces North Korea's nuclear and ICBM rocket testing "will be discontinued” and the nuclear test site in the country’s north "will be discarded"
5:50 PM - 20 Apr 2018
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared that Pyongyang no longer has a need to continue ballistic missile and nuclear weapons testing, according to the state-run KCNA news agency.
The country's military will cease carrying out nuclear tests by April 21, according to a report released early on Saturday. The test site in Punggye-ri, North Korea's only publicly known nuclear weapons testing facility, "will shut down" in order "to prove the vow to suspend nuclear tests," Kim said.
Pyongyang "will join international efforts to halt nuclear tests altogether," Kim is quoted as saying.
The decision was reached by the ruling Worker's Party of Korea at a meeting on Friday, KCNA reports.
Kim: “The suspension of nuclear testing is an important process for global nuclear disarmament, and the DPRK will join international efforts and efforts to halt the nuclear test altogether."
North Korea has dropped its long-held demand that the United States withdraw forces from South Korea in exchange for denuclearization, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Thursday.
The United States has about 28,000 troops stationed in South Korea, a presence that has long irked North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
However, in the burgeoning spirit of openness and diplomacy, Moon said Kim is willing to give up US troops' removal as a precondition for discussions over denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.