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Questions Arise over 2002 CIA Report on N. Korea

A top U.S. intelligence official is questioning a 2002 CIA report that sparked a crisis with North Korea. The report said North Korea was constructing a plant capable of producing enough weapons-grade uranium for two or more nuclear bombs a year. President Bush cut off oil supplies to Pyongyang and North Korea kicked out all International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors, restarted its nuclear reactor and conducted an underground nuclear test.

Now an intelligence official named Joseph DeTrani has re-evaluated the original information about North Korea.

In Senate testimony Tuesday, he said the U.S. is not as sure as it had previously been about North Korea's uranium enrichment.


DeTrani's comments raise questions about the merit of the CIA's analysis in 2002.

But the chief negotiator for disarmament talks with North Korea — Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill — said Wednesday at a House hearing that there is still cause for concern.

Hill said North Korea has not acknowledged the existence of a uranium-enrichment program, but has agreed to discuss the issue. Hill will meet a North Korean counterpart in New York early next week.

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