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Russia Confirms North Korea Holds Nuclear Test

Mos News | October 9 2006

A top Russian military officer confirmed Monday that the device tested by North Korea was a nuclear weapon, the UPI news agency reports.

Russia’s ITAR-TASS news agency quoted the head of a Defense Ministry department Lt. Gen. Vladimir Verkhovtsev as saying that Russian military monitoring systems “detected the test of a nuclear weapon in North Korea. It is 100 percent (certain) that it was an underground nuclear explosion.”

Russia had urged Pyongyang not to conduct a nuclear test. Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov last week voiced concern about the environmental consequences for Russia, which borders North Korea and has large cities in the region, while the Foreign Ministry warned that a nuclear test would add to regional tensions and undermine the international nuclear nonproliferation regime.

Russia has sought to restore Soviet-era ties with Pyongyang in recent years, but its diplomacy has had little visible effect on North Korea’s actions.

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