The recent nuclear test was the sixth and most powerful test North Korea has conducted since its first in 2006, demonstrating a stunning advance in the country's ability to build high-yield nuclear weapons.
The Korea Times reports that South Korea successfully conducted its first live-fire drill for an advanced air-launched cruise missile on September 12. "The summit partners were selected based on the need to seek their cooperation to counter the North's nuclear crisis, bilateral relations and effectiveness to promote the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics".
"It was hard to find out how powerful the nuclear test was with the amount of xenon detected, but we can say the xenon was from North Korea", Choi Jongbae, executive commissioner, told a news conference in Seoul.
South Korea says it has found a small amount of radioactive element from air samples it collected following North Korea's latest nuclear test. That led to Resolution 1718, establishing a United Nations sanctions regime, aiming to stop all nuclear, ballistic missile, and other weapons of mass destruction programs. The administration of President Donald Trump has indicated it will consider secondary sanctions if the United Nations sanctions are not fully implemented.
Pyongyang was expected to test an intercontinental ballistic rocket last Sunday as North Koreans celebrated the country's 69th anniversary of its founding, but the test did not happen.
While Moon was voted into office in May largely on his economic and anti-corruption policies, his first months in power have been dominated by North Korea's provocations.
"Diplomacy, we will not give up on".
North Korea made an explicit threat to use a nuclear weapon to sink Japan, in remarks that further cranks up heightened tensions in North Asia. Despite being much smaller, the country appears to be trying to antagonize its enemies, especially South Korea, China, the U.S. and Japan. Pyongyang is already pointing thousands of pieces of artillery at Seoul, South Korea's capital - with a whopping 25.6 million residents living in the greater metropolitan area.
The report did not offer details, but said that Choe Kang-il, deputy Director General for North American affairs at the North Korean Foreign Ministry, and Evans Revere, a former senior official at the State Department, had raised North Korea's ballistic missile and nuclear tests.
So while some used to laugh at North Korea's boisterous statements, it's doubtful many in Washington, Seoul, and Tokyo are chuckling now.