Latest satellite photos reveal that North Korea might be building a new submarine capable of launching ballistic-missiles which can also deliver nuclear payloads, according to a report published by Washington based think-tanks.

Analysts Joseph Bermudez and Victor Cha of Beyond Parallel have drawn conclusions from latest satellite photographs and media reports from July that North Korea may be developing a ballistic missile submarine (SSB) to add to the Korean People’s Navy’s existing experimental ballistic missile submarines (SSBA).

The satellite images taken on Monday are of Sinpo South Shipyard. Support vessels and cranes appear in these photographs, which suggest they are preparing to tow out the missile test stand barge out into the sea for an SLBM test flight.

"What we have found in this imagery is that there is a lot of activity at the warehouse, a lot of camouflage or shrouding activity by the North Koreans, erecting of cranes that are ... consistent with building this new ballistic missile submarine," Cha told MSNBC.

According to the analysts, the submarine technology of North Korea is mainly from the Soviets which is outdated and are not capable of launching nuclear warheads. The new ballistic missile-capable submarine would give them another means of launching a nuclear missile, without being detected easily. The new reports are sure to set the alarm bells ringing at Pentagon, as the SSB escalates the already existing nuclear threat posed by North Korea.

The satellite photos confirm the earlier reports published by the North Korean media on July 23, 2019, which shows President Kim Jong-Un inspecting a newly built submarine in what was suspected to be the follow-on SSB at the Sinpo South Shipyard. According to the reports, Kim said that he was greatly satisfied with the development of the reports and the operational deployment of the submarine was “near at hand.”

Contrary to the media reports that describe the new developments as an imminent threat, the analysts argued based on evidence that the SSB was an emerging threat, as it needed to undergo additional trial and tests before being fully operational. “This process could take easily take more than a year depending upon issues that arise,” they wrote in the report.

The report says that if North Korea succeeds in building the submarine it would undermine the U.S. government’s goal of full denuclearization. President Donald Trump has had two meetings with Kim earlier as part of nuclear negotiations but their talks broke down without any conclusion.

File picture of a Chinese navy submarine leaving Qingdao Port in Qingdao of Shandong Province, China. Guang Niu/Pool/Getty Images