New satellite images released by a U.S.-based website specializing in North Korea show that activity and movement has been detected at the North's Sinpo Shipyard located in South Hamgyong Province.
38 North explained the regime may be modifying its submersible missile test barge at the site.
It said the missile canister for the test barge has likely been removed, adding that this could possibly be for maintenance or for the replacement of a new canister or launch frame to fit larger submarine-launched ballistic missiles, or SLBMs.
The website went on to speculate that the latest movements spotted during the past few weeks could indicate that the regime is undergoing preparations to roll out a new ballistic missile submarine, modify the test barge to accommodate large SLBMs or even making early preparation for an SLBM test.
To this, Seoul's military says it is preparing for several possible scenarios.
"The Korean military is closely monitoring the latest development under close coordination with Washington, and we continue to maintain a readiness posture."
North Korea is celebrating the birth anniversary of the late grandfather of current leader Kim Jong-un, which falls on April 15th, with large sports and cultural events.
It's left to be seen whether Pyeongyang will carry out a test launch or disclose its new submarine to celebrate the birthday of the country's founder, which is also dubbed "the Day of the Sun."
Kim Hyo-sun, Arirang News.