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North Korea may finish work by late 2013 on a light-water reactor that could be used to support its nuclear weapons program, a think tank in Washington, D.C., said Tuesday.
The Institute for Science and International Security published satellite images taken in May and June of the Yongbyon nuclear complex showing cranes and metal beams that could be used to bring heavy components into the reactor.
An expert who reviewed the photographs “estimated that the reactor could be completed in the second half of 2013,” the think tank said in a report.
Most major external work appears to be complete except for covering the reactor with a dome, which has been seen lying next to the site since November, the think tank said.
A separate assessment of earlier satellite imagery, released in May by Johns Hopkins University’s U.S.-Korea Institute, also described advances but doubted the facility would be operational before 2014 or 2015.
Iran seeks foreign helpfor quake-hit area
TEHRAN — In a change of heart, Iran said Tuesday it now welcomes foreign aid for victims of the deadly twin earthquakes that hit the country’s northwest over the weekend.
The remarks indicated authorities were struggling to cope with the quakes’ aftermath. Critics charged they failed to react quickly enough to help the region along the borders with Azerbaijan and Armenia, where the 6.4 and 6.3 magnitude quakes Saturday killed 306 people and injured more than 3,000.
“We would welcome help by any country,” said Iran’s parliament speaker, Ali Larijani, during his visit to the earthquake-stricken area on Tuesday.
Iran’s government said it has provided shelter for about 50,000 people who lost their homes during the quakes, which have been followed by scores of aftershocks.
Gunmen kill eightin gang-war town
MONTERREY — Gunmen killed eight people in an attack on a bar in the northern Mexico city of Monterrey, police said Tuesday.
Four victims died at the scene of the attack late Monday, and four others died of their wounds at local hospitals. Another person was being treated for wound suffered in the shooting.
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