By James Pearson and Ju-min Park SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea has made considerable progress this year on weapons technology, including testing a submarine-launched missile for the first time, but it's still not clear if the isolated nation has developed a nuclear warhead. It also does not yet have a fleet of submarines that can launch the newly developed missile. Also, three major factories known to produce machine parts for North Korea's sanctioned nuclear and missile programs have been modernized or expanded, according to analysis of recent satellite imagery seen by Reuters, a further sign of its commitment of scarce resources to weapons.
Kurdish-backed militias in Syria agreed Tuesday to a US initiative to stop fighting Turkish forces whose week-old incursion in the country has stoked tensions between Washington and Ankara. The truce was announced separately by a senior US defence official in Washington and the Kurdish-backed Syrian fighters, but Turkey neither confirmed nor denied it had agreed to hold fire. Turkey launched an unprecedented cross-border offensive into Syria last Wednesday, saying it was aimed at ridding the frontier of both Islamic State group jihadists and a Kurdish militia.