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N Korea blast may be nuclear bluff

UPI | September 13 2004

MOSCOW, Sept. 13 (UPI) -- A huge mysterious explosion in North Korea last week may have been part of an act to confuse its enemies, a leading Russian expert said Monday.

The powerful explosion Thursday may have been a bluff to convince the United States and other nations that North Korea already possesses nuclear weapons when in reality it does not, Alexander Zhebin, head of the Korean Research Center at the Russian Academy of Science's Far East Institute told the Interfax news agency.

North Korean foreign policy includes generating mystery and confusion to enemies, rivals or partners in order to hide its genuine state of national affairs, Zhebin said.

"Probably, the explosion was part of (this) policy," he said. "It might have aimed to show that (North) Korea has something (in the nuclear sphere) while this may not exist," Zhebin added.

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