North Korea Flag for North Korea

North Korea

The world’s newest nuclear weapon possessing state, North Korea withdrew from the NPT in 2003 and conducted its first nuclear test in 2006. North Korea has developed sophisticated nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles despite international condemnation, and diplomatic efforts to denuclearize the country have thus far been met with failure.

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Region   East Asia and the Pacific

~25-50 Current nuclear warhead stockpile estimates

6 Nuclear tests conducted, most recently in 2017

13,000 Kilometers estimated maximum range of Hwasong-15 ICBM

~25-48 Kilograms estimated plutonium inventory


Nuclear

  • Tested likely thermonuclear device in 2017
  • Agreed to a moratorium on nuclear and long-range missile testing in 2018; resumed long-range missile tests in 2020
  • Produces enriched uranium and weapons-grade plutonium

North Korea Nuclear Overview


Biological

  • Assessments of capabilities and intent are speculative and vary widely
  • Accused by U.S. and South Korea of pursuing biological weapons despite treaty commitments
  • Presumed capability to produce anthrax, smallpox and plague

North Korea Biological Overview


Missile

  • Variety of land-based ballistic and cruise missiles; recent tests of short- and medium-range, solid-fueled missiles
  • Tested first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the Hwasong-15, in 2017
  • Exporter of ballistic missile technology to countries such as Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, and Syria

North Korea Missile Overview


Chemical

  • Denies chemical weapons possession, but refuses to accede to Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC)
  • South Korea estimates North Korea's stockpile at 2,500 – 5,000 tons of chemical weapons agents
  • Weapons program has concentrated on acquiring mustard, phosgene, sarin, and VX

North Korea Chemical Overview

Treaties and Regimes Memberships

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Biological Weapons Convention (BTWC)

The BTWC mandates the elimination of existing biological weapons and prohibits developing, stockpiling, or using biological and toxin weapons.

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NPT

The NPT is a treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons through the three pillars of non-proliferation, disarmament, and peaceful use of nuclear energy.

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Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC)

The Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) requires countries to destroy all chemical weapons and prohibits developing, stockpiling, or using chemical weapons.

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Geneva Protocol

Facilities

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Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Facility

  • Location Punggye-ri (풍계리), Gilju-gun (길주군), North Hamgyeong Province (함경북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Test Site
  • Facility Status Operational

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Sohae Satellite Launching Station

  • Location Dongchang-dong (동창동), Cheolsan-gun (철산군), Pyonganbuk-do (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Operational

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Tonghae Satellite Launching Ground

  • Location Musudan-ri (무수단리), Hwadae-kun (화대군), North Hamgyong Province (함경북도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Operational; second launch pad under construction

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Yongdeok-dong High-Explosive Test Site

  • Location Yongdeok-dong (용덕동), Guseong (구성), North Pyeongan Province (평안북도), North Korea*
  • Type Nuclear-Weaponization
  • Facility Status Operational

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Yongbyon High-Explosive Test Site

  • Location Near the banks of the Kuryong River (구룡강), Bungang-jigu (분강지구), Yongbyon-gun (영변군), North Pyeongan Province (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Weaponization
  • Facility Status Probably unused since the 1990s

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MGC-20 Cyclotron

  • Location Sosan-dong (서산동), Sosong-guyok (서성구역), Pyongyang (평양시), Pyongyang, North Korea*
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Kim Il Sung University

  • Location Ryongnam-dong (룡남동), Daesong-kuyok (대성구역), Pyongyang (평양시), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Taecheon 200MWe Nuclear Reactor

  • Location Taecheon-gun (태천군), Pyeonganbuk-do (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Power Reactor
  • Facility Status unfinished, abandoned

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Yongbyon Nuclear Research Center

  • Location Pungang-jigu (분강지구), Yongbyon-gun (영변군), Pyonganbuk-do (평안북도), North Korea*
  • Type Nuclear-Reprocessing
  • Facility Status Operational

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Hagap Underground Suspected Nuclear Facility

  • Location Area around Gaphyundong (갑현동), Huicheon (희천시), Jagang Province (자강도), North Korea. Note: Hagap (하갑), Nammyeon (남면), Huicheon-gun (희천군), North Pyeongan Province is an old administrative name for Gaphyeondong. In 1949, Huicheon-gun became part of Jagang Province, which was formed from part of North Pyeongan Province. Huicheon is now a city.
  • Type Nuclear-Enrichment
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Geumchang-ri Underground Facility

  • Location Geumchang-ri (금창리), Taegwan-gun (대관군), North Pyeongan Province (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Storage
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Geumho-Jigu Light Water Reactor Site

  • Location Geumho-Jigu (금호지구), Sinpo (신포시), Hamgyeongnam-do (함경남도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Power Reactor
  • Facility Status Unfinished, construction stopped

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Atomic Energy Research Institute

  • Location Bungang-jigu (분강지구), Yongbyon-gun (영변군), Pyonganbuk-do (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Operational

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Pakch’ŏn Uranium Mine

  • Location P'akch'ŏn-kun (박천군), North P'yŏng'an Province (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Exploration and Mining
  • Facility Status Unknown

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P’yŏngsan Uranium Milling Facility

  • Location P'yŏnghwa-ri (평화리), P'yŏngsan-kun (평산군), North Hwanghae Province (황해북도), North Korea
  • Type Nuclear-Milling
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Sŭngni Automobile Factory

  • Location Tŏkch'ŏn (덕천군), South P'yŏng'an Province (평안남도)
  • Type Missile-Production

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No. Seven Factory

  • Location Yongsŏng-kuyŏk (용성구역), Pyongyang (평양시), North Korea, about "a 20-30 minute bus ride from the Man'gyŏngdae Electric Machinery Factory"
  • Type Missile-Research and Development

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Chiha-ri Missile Base

  • Location Chiha-ri (지하리), P'an'gyo-kun (판교군), Kangwŏn Province (강원도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Active

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January 18th Machine Factory

  • Location Kag'am-dong (각암동), Kaech'ŏn (개천시), South P'yŏng'an Province (평안남도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Kusŏng Machine Tool Factory

  • Location Kusŏng (구성시), North P'yŏng'an Province (평안북도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Production

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Pyongyang Semiconductor Factory

  • Location Taedonggang-dong (대동강동), Taedonggang-kuyŏk (대동강구역), Pyongyang
  • Type Missile-Production

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Pukchung Machine Complex

  • Location Pukchung-nodongjagu (북중노동자구), Yongch'ŏn-kun (용천군), North Pyŏng'an Province (평안북도)
  • Type Missile-Production

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No. 26 Factory

  • Location Konggwi-dong (공귀동), Kanggye (강계시), Chagang Province (자강도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Yŏngjŏ-ri Missile Base

  • Location Between Kungmangbong (국망봉) and Mujungbong (무중봉), Yŏngjŏ-ri (영저리), Kimhyŏngjik-kun (김형직군), Yanggang Province (양강도), North Korea, about 20km from the Chinese border [Note: "Yŏngjŏ-ri" is often misidentified as "Yŏngjŏ-dong (영저동)" but the actual administrative unit is a "ri (리)."]
  • Type Missile-Base

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Yongnim-ŭp Missile Base

  • Location Yongnim-ŭp (용림읍), Yongnim-kun (용림군), Chagang Province (자강도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Unknown

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No. 125 Factory

  • Location Northwestern part of Pyongyang. There are conflicting reports on the location of this facility. Some reports place the factory in Chung'i-dong (중이동), Yongsŏng-kuyŏk (용성구역), Pyongyang, and others place it in Hyŏngjesan-kuyŏk (형제산구역), Pyongyang. Yongsŏng-kuyŏk and Hyŏngjesan-kuyŏk are adjacent to each other, and Chung'i-dong is right next to Hyŏngjesan-kuyŏk, which could be the cause for confusion. The South Korean Ministry of Unification reports that the factory is in "Chunggye-dong" (중계동), Hyŏngjesan-kuyŏk, Pyongyang, but apparently there is no "Chunggye-dong" in Hyŏngjesan-kuyŏk. There is a "Ch'ŏnggye-dong," which is nearby, but in Yongsŏng-kuyŏk.
  • Type Missile-Production
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Hamheung University of Chemical Industry

  • Location Segori-dong (세거리동), Hamhung (함흥시), Hamgyongnam-do (함경남도), North Korea
  • Type Chemical-Research and Development
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Kumcheon Scud Missile Base

  • Location Kŭmch'ŏn-ri (금천리), Anbyŏn-kun (안변군), Kangwŏn Province (강원도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base

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Okp’yŏng-dong Missile Base

  • Location Okp'yŏng-dong (옥평동), Munch'ŏn (문천시), Kangwŏn Province (강원도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Sakkabbong Missile Base

  • Location Sakkabbong (삿갓봉), Koksan-kun (곡산군), North Hwanghae Province (황해북도), North Korea
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Sangnam-ri Missile Base

  • Location Sangnam-ri (상남리), Hŏch'ŏn-kun (호천군), South Hamgyŏng Province (함경남도), North KoreaPrimary Function: Deployment and launch of missiles, possibly Nodong and/or TaepodongSubordinate to: Missile Division (미사일 사단), Ministry of the People's Armed Forces (인민무력성), National Defense Commission (국방위원회)
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Unknown

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Shin’o-ri Missile Base

  • Location Shin'o-ri (신오리), Unjŏn-kun (운전군), North P'yŏng'an Province (평안북도), North KoreaPrimary Function: Deployment and launch of Nodong missiles
  • Type Missile-Base
  • Facility Status Unknown

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