North Korea says its uranium enrichment programme is progressing and that it is building a light—water reactor, stressing that they are for peaceful purposes.

The North first revealed the uranium programme earlier this month to a visiting U.S. scientist, claiming it had two thousand centrifuges in operation, and U.S. officials fear they could be used in a nuclear weapons programme.

The North’s main Rodong Sinmun newspaper says in commentary that the programme is for peaceful purposes only. The commentary was carried by the official Korean Central News Agency.

North Korea has been pushing for renewed international talks on receiving much-needed aid in return for commitments to dismantle its nuclear programmes. The North attacked South Korean island on Nov. 23, killing four people and spiking tensions.

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