US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that Washington would agree to lift sanctions on North Korea if the country agrees to completely dismantle its nuclear weapons program, a move that would create economic prosperity that "will rival" that of South Korea.
USA researchers say recent satellite imagery shows that North Korea has begun dismantling facilities at its nuclear test site.
However no tunnel entrances appear to have been permanently closed and some main buildings are still intact, it added, saying the destruction of those facilities was likely to be carried out in front of the foreign media.
According to Chinese academic reports, North Korea's most recent nuclear test in September of what Pyongyang said was a hydrogen bomb, was so large it triggered a collapse inside the mountain, rendering the entire site unusable for future tests.
[I] t's also possible North Korea no longer needs the site.
It also comes ahead of an unprecedented U.S. Trump called the action "a very smart and gracious gesture!" on Twitter and told reporters that the process "is very important".
The goal of the new buildings at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Centre was unknown, 38 North has said, with "no observable signs that initial reactor operations are imminent".
This week, President Donald Trump welcomed home three Americans who were being held as political prisoners in North Korea, and announced the date and time of his highly anticipated meeting with Kim Jong Un.
According to the KCNA announcement, the North will invite local press, but worldwide media will be limited to journalists from China, Russia, South Korea, Britain and the United States, due to the testing ground's "small space". 38North analysts noted that several "key buildings" of Punggye-ri complex were demolished during those 15 days, as well as or secondary constructions.
The two leaders signed a joint statement that committed both to deepening ties and working towards reunification after the meeting on April 27, which saw Kim become the first North Korean leader to set foot in South Korea since the Korean War, which took place from 1950-1953 prior to an armistice agreement.
The Trump administration argues that it will only negotiate with North Korea "The complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantling" of its nuclear program, something that regime has always refused to consider essential to its survival.
But North Korea has invited the outside world to witness the dismantling of its nuclear facilities before. Pompeo added that Americans will also help invest in North Korean infrastructure and agriculture to help feed its people if the country meets U.S. demands.