North Korea is said to be on the verge of another nuclear test

US officials say North Korea's sixth nuclear test could come as early as Saturday morning.

Officials and other sources said the reclusive nation had placed a nuclear device in a tunnel, which could be detonated by the end of the week, according to Steve Herman, White House bureau chief of Voice of America News.

The suspicion is also corroborated by four weeks of "high levels of activity" at the Punggye-ri nuclear-test site, according to 38 North, a research group from the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University.

The research group's findings included new commercial-satellite imagery that showed the location of the tunnel, where four of North Korea's recent nuclear tests were also initiated, in addition to other evidence of an imminent test.

According to their analysis, water being pumped from the suspected tunnel was being soaked to the ground elsewhere, which may indicate that the tunnel was being prepped for testing devices. Additionally, tracks from footsteps and vehicles were visible from the melting snow. Identifying the exact equipment being used proved to be difficult, however, due to what appeared to be netting that covered the area.

"We have no comment at this time but we will be watching closely," a defense official said to VOA.

The suspected detonation date, April 15, is of importance for the country, considering that it marks the 105th birth anniversary of Kim Il Sung, North Korea's founder. The nation has in the past conducted other extravagant military displays on special dates — on April 2012, the country to fired a failed long-range rocket prior to the "100th Day of the Sun."

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Celebrating North Korea's Kim Il-sung
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Celebrating North Korea's Kim Il-sung
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his sister Kim Yo Jong attend an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A North Korean soldier walks on the road in the newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
People react as a vehicle carrying foreign reporters passes towards the newly constructed residential complex before its opening in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
A man looks at a board showing information about the newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un cuts the ribbon during an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Soldiers cheer as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrives for an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
A vendor is pictured in a shop in newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Kim Yo Jong, sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, attends an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Women wearing traditional dresses walk through a newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
North Korean soldiers stand behind flags before an opening ceremony for a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Men wearing uniforms check a newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Men in uniforms walk between buildings after the opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Thousands of people arrive for an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
North Korean soldiers march as they visit the newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People walk between buildings after the opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
A man carries flags after an opening ceremony for the newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
North Korean soldiers carry flags as they visit the newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Women wearing traditional clothes walk past North Korean soldiers after an opening ceremony for a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People check shoes in a shop in a newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
A North Korean soldier smiles as thousands visit the newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People check newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Men wait for an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
North Korean soldiers stand guard before an opening ceremony for newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People react as a vehicle carrying foreign reporters passes towards the newly constructed residential complex before its opening in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People stand in front of a board showing details about newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People visit newly constructed residential complex after its opening ceremony in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
People cheer towards the stage where North Korean leader Kim Jong Un cut the ribbon during an opening ceremony of a newly constructed residential complex in Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea April 13, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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The report follows North Korea's message to foreign journalist to prepare for a "big and important event" earlier this week. On Tuesday, several journalists were allegedly woken up before dawn and were told to get ready with no other information or details.

Around 200 journalists were then reported to have been told to leave their lighters, cell phones, and laptops, before being placed in buses to be transported to a different location for the event. So far, reports from the country have remained scant.

Amid the tensions, a US Air Force WC-135 Constant Phoenix was also reported to have arrived in neighboring Japan on April 7. The aircraft specializes in radioactive debris detection and is also known as a "nuke-sniffer."

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