The natural disaster, which South Korea put at magnitude 3.0, was detected in Kilju county in North Hamgyong Province, where North Korea's known Punggyeri nuclear site is located, the official said. "In this case we saw none". "So as of now, we are categorising this as a natural quake".
However, initial assessment of the quake differed widely, with the Chinese natural disaster administration saying that it had detected a magnitude 3.4 natural disaster in North Korea that was a "suspected explosion".
Under leader Kim Jong-un, North Korea has made rapid progress in its weapons programmes, and it launched two intercontinental ballistic missiles in July that appeared to bring much of the U.S. mainland into range. The last test on Sept 3 registered as a 6.3 magnitude quake.
While the cause remains unknown, alternative explanations suggested by North Korea analysts include tunnel collapses at the testing site.
The North conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on September 3 in what it said was the detonation of a thermonuclear weapon built for its developmental Hwasong-14 ICBMs.
There is still hope for peace, "and we must not give up" on solving the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula, China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi told world leaders at the United Nations today, while urging the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK) not to go "further along a risky direction".
The quake came at the end of a week that saw a blistering war of words between Kim and Trump, with the USA leader using his maiden speech at the UN General Assembly to warn that Washington would "totally destroy" the North if America or its allies were threatened.
Earlier this month, Jeffrey Lewis, Director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, told The National Interest that believes that North Korea could very well conduct such a test-something he has dubbed Juche Bird.
News comes as U.S. ordered new sanctions against North Korea over its nuclear program.
It came after days of increasingly bellicose rhetoric between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un's regime, as global alarm mounts over Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions.
The president assured those in attendance, without details, that he would defend the US against any offensives launched by North Korea: "I can tell you one thing, you are protected, OK?"
They have also coincided with the rapid expansion of North Korea's foreign trade.
In a series of meetings this week at the United Nations, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has reiterated to various foreign counterparts that apart from sanctions, the resolutions also call for dialogue to resume and that this needs to happen.
China will limit the supply of refined petroleum products to North Korea in order to comply with the latest United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions, Beijing's Ministry of Commerce announced on Saturday via its website.
Stanford News Service interviewed two Stanford experts about the escalating situation between the two countries and what options leaders have on the table when it comes to North Korea. The companies have been "ordered to earn foreign currency" and, with legal means of doing so being constrained by United Nations export bans, they "are turning to drugs manufacturing on an industrial scale". In turn, the United States should develop contingency plans to respond to a direct cyberattack from North Korea.
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