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09:49 AM, April 20, 2017
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USAF Nuclear Sniffer Aircraft Sorties Over S. Korea To Pick Possible Nuke Test
The US Air Force's WC-135 Constant Phoenix sniffer plane (Yonhap photo)

The US Air Force nuclear sniffer aircraft was dispatched Thursday towards the east sea of Korean Peninsula amid speculations about North Korea’s imminent bomb test.

Thursday's flight appears to be meant for checking whether the secretive communist nation has detonated a nuclear bomb, Yonhap reports.

"The WC-135 Constant Phoenix, a special-purpose US plane, made an emergency sortie today over the East Sea," the source told.

The WC-135 arrived at Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, Japan, early this month. Its mission is to collect samples from the atmosphere in order to detect and identity a nuclear explosion.

It also tests operational readiness in the event of an actual provocation by the North, the source added.

South Korea's military said earlier the North seems all set to conduct what would be its sixth nuclear test at its Punggye-ri site in its northeastern region anytime on the leadership's decision. 

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