There are rumblings on the wire that North Korea has just conducted an underground nuclear bomb test.
This comes from a seismic reading of M4.9, detected by the the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) at 11:57 JST (2:57:51 UTC), which is presumed to be man-made. It occurred in the area east-northeast of Sungjibaegam, North Korea.
At the moment of this writing, government officials are still attempting to 100% verify that this was, indeed, a nuclear test. But it’s a safe assumption, and the Japanese and South Korean governments are calling emergency security meetings.
Prior to this news, reports had indicated North Korea had pulled “manpower and equipment” away from its test site. There’s also news that the U.S. and China were, in fact, notified of the test a day in advance.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) February 12, 2013
Of course, this wouldn’t be the first nuclear test performed by North Korea. In both 2006 and 2009, they conducted tests, with the latter causing tremors around 4.7-5.3 magnitude.
However, this one’s at least somewhat unsettling following their recent posturing and nuclear-tinged propaganda video (set to the tune of Michael Jackson’s We Are The World, no less):
Like they say, everything hits at once…
Update: And confirmed.