Updated Jun 2, 2018 - World

North Korea may have faked the detonation of a nuclear test site

Brown and white smoke rises over green trees. Aerial view.

Punggye-ri nuclear test site is reportedly demolished on May 24, 2018. Photo: News1-Dong-A Ilbo via Getty Images

When North Korea exploded its nuclear test site at Punggye-ri last month, it was likely all a charade.

The evidence: The amount of dust from the explosions appears to have been too small for scientists to glean geologic activity, like a collapsed tunnel, and journalists who were invited to watch were 500 meters from the explosion, which indicates they were small blasts, per CNN.

The big picture: North Korea may not be serious about completing a verifiable, permanent, and irreversible denuclearization; North Koreans removed technical equipment from the site before the detonations, indicating they may be interested in using it later.

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