Welcoming this announcement, US President Donald Trump, who is scheduled to meet Jong-un in Singapore on June 12 to negotiate the denuclearization of Korea and normalization of the relationship between the two countries, tweeted: "North Korea has announced that they will dismantle Nuclear Test Site this month, ahead of the big Summit Meeting on June 12th".
"Commercial satellite imagery from May 7 provided the first definitive evidence that dismantlement of the test site was already well underway", USA researchers affiliated with the North Korea-monitoring site 38 North reported Monday evening.
The researchers say the satellite imagery "provided the first definitive evidence that dismantlement of the test site was already well underway".
"We hope that the sound of dynamite blowing up the Punggye-ri tunnels will be a gun salute in a journey toward a Korean Peninsula free of nuclear weapons", Seoul's presidential spokesperson said.
North Korea's reference to such activity is created to communicate that even without underground testing, the country intends to maintain its nuclear arsenal and be a "responsible" steward of those weapons at the same time, said Andrea Berger, a senior analyst at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.
Kim declared his nuclear force as complete in December, following North Korea's most powerful nuclear test to date in September and three flight tests of ICBMs created to reach the US mainland.
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Bolton said the United States side also will discuss not just North Korea's nuclear and missile programs but its chemical and biological weapons arsenal as well. Trump called the action "a very smart and gracious gesture!" on Twitter and told reporters that the process "is very important".
It is also one of eight countries with nuclear test capacity, including the United States, China and Iran, which have so far failed to either sign or ratify the 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, blocking it from taking effect.
According to the report, North Korea has also removed some of the mining cart rails used to access the underground part of the site, which is based in the mountainous northern region of North Korea.
"In the end, North Korea will remain 'a nuclear power packaged as a non-nuclear state, '" Thae told the South's Newsis news agency.
North Korea plans to join global efforts to implement a total ban on nuclear weapons tests, it told the United Nations disarmament body Tuesday, May 15.
Last month, Pompeo became the first known USA official to meet with Kim, where he helped lay the groundwork for the upcoming meeting with Trump.
Analysis published Monday claims photographs taken May 7 show some of the buildings at the site have been razed.