Japan and South Korea detect signs of North Korean missile test preparations

- Japan and South Korea detect signs of North Korean missile test preparations.

- No confirmation of fresh activity from satellite images.

- U.S. continues diplomatic efforts supported by military options.
Japan has disclosed that it has detected some signals from North Korea which indicate that they may be starting preparation for another Nuclear or Missile test.

Although satellite images have not confirmed any fresh activities, a Japanese government source disclosed that although the signals are not unusual, they also coincide with the periodic spacing between North Korea's missile tests since April.

"This is not enough to determine (if a launch is likely soon)," the source said to reporters.

South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon also told reporters on Tuesday there have been "noteworthy" movements from the North since its last missile launch in mid-September, but there was no hard evidence of another nuclear or missile test.

"North Korea hasn't been engaging in new nuclear or missile tests but recently we've seen them persistently testing engines and carrying out fuel tests," said Cho at a media event in Seoul.

"But we need some more time to see whether these are directly related to missile and nuclear tests."

Asked about the media reports, Pentagon spokesman Colonel Robert Manning told reporters the United States continued to watch North Korea very closely.

"This is a diplomatically led effort at this point, supported by military options," he said.

"The Republic of Korea and U.S. alliance remains strong and capable of countering any North Korean provocations or attacks."

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