WASHINGTON (Reuters) - North Korea is continuing to produce fissile material for nuclear bombs in spite of its pledge to denuclearize, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday.
Asked at a Senate committee hearing whether this was the case, Pompeo responded to Democratic Senator Ed Markey by saying: “Yes, that’s correct ... Yes, they continue to produce fissile material.”
Pompeo declined to respond when asked whether North Korea was continuing to pursue submarine-launched ballistic missiles or whether North Korea’s nuclear programme was advancing generally.
Pompeo said he would be happy to answer the latter question if necessary in a classified setting but suggested public statements on the issue would not help “a complex negotiation with a difficult adversary.”
Reporting by David Brunnstrom and Lesley Wroughton; editing by Jonathan Oatis and James Dalgleish