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After months of inactivity, North Korea has resumed work on its new experimental light water reactor (ELWR), which the DPRK claims is intended to help solve domestic energy shortages, but is also an important component in its effort to build nuclear weapons. Commercial satellite photography from April 30, 2012 reveals that Pyongyang is now close to completion of the reactor containment building. The next major step in construction will be loading the heavy components, such as the pressure vessel, steam generator, and pressurizer, likely through the cylindrical opening in the roof of the reactor containment building. That process could take 6-12 months to complete. Overall, it may take another 1-2 years before the new facility becomes operational.
Unidentified North Koreans have detained 29 Chinese fishermen from three boats and are demanding payment for their release, Chinese media says.
They were seized on 8 May in the Yellow Sea between China and North Korea by a gunboat, said the Beijing News.