SEOUL, Oct. 8 (UPI) -- North Korea is not likely to launch a rocket in commemoration of a major anniversary, but that doesn't mean Pyongyang will not display its latest weaponry during a military parade on Saturday.
An unidentified Seoul military official told South Korean outlet News 1 North Korea could show weapons that have yet to be publicized, but it is more plausible Pyongyang would flaunt its submarine-launched ballistic missiles during the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Workers' Party.
In May, North Korea released footage of what it claimed to be the triumphant lift-off of an SLBM, showing a ballistic missile shooting out of a submerged watercraft. As it pierced the sky, the narrator mocked the United States and South Korea, comparing them to "startled calves."
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had said Pyongyang could conduct underwater operations at any time, using world-class strategic weapons that could be used to strike and destroy forces hostile to the "sovereignty and dignity" of North Korea, and its military-first policy.
The Seoul source said the North could take about four to five years to produce a fully functional SLBM.
Another weapon that could go on display during the 70th anniversary parade is North Korea's intercontinental ballistic missile, the KN-08. North Korea already has included the missile in parades in 2012 and 2013, but South Korean press reported the exhibit was probably a model, and not an actual missile.
The KN-08 is capable of reaching the continental United States and can travel as far as 7,450 miles, but it has not been test fired, according to the source. Other weapons including the Taepodong-2, an intermediate-range ballistic missile, are expected to be on parade alongside the KN-02, a short-range rocket.
North Korea's commitment to developing nuclear weapons has impeded dialogue with the United States, but U.S. Ambassador to Seoul Mark Lippert told press on Thursday the United States is ready to engage in sincere and trustworthy dialogue with Pyongyang, and that the "ball is in North Korea's court."
North Korea's failure to denuclearize, however, would mean the United States and its partners would continue to take measures against Pyongyang, Lippert said.