Recent satellite photos indicate that North Korea is constructing new missiles in Sanumdong, where a factory produced the country’s first intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States.
It appears that work is continuing on one and possibly two liquid-fueled ICBMs at a large research facility, according to The Washington Post. The Post stated, “The Sanumdong factory has produced two of North Korea’s ICBMs, including the powerful Hwasong-15, the first with a proven range that could allow it to strike the U.S. East Coast. The newly-obtained evidence points to ongoing work on at least one Hwasong-15 at the Sanumdong plant, according to imagery collected by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in recent weeks.”
In addition to the photos showing the factory at work, other photos showed supply trucks and other vehicles traveling to and from the factory. Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies said the missile facility “is not dead, by any stretch of the imagination … It’s active. We see shipping containers and vehicles coming and going. This is a facility where they build ICBMs and space-launch vehicles.”
One image revealed a bright-red covered trailer that looked exactly the same as ones used in years past transport of ICBMs.
David Schmerler, research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, checked satellite images of Sanumdong in early 2017, finding a building big enough to contain a 30-meter Kwangmyongsong rocket.