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English as a Second Language/Question about Structure of sentece

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Question
Mr. Baker. Thank you for your help with my study.
Below is a quotation from CNN student NEWS.  
“Georgia.
We`re starting in East Asia today with the tale of two Koreas.
First, the North, a secretive communist dictatorship that claims it recently tested out a hydrogen bomb.”

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1601/11/sn.01.html

I try to understand structure of this sentence .  but I can not understand role of  the word “that”.  I think the subject word of this sentence is “North” and  “a secretive communist dictatorship “  is additional explanation to North . If “that” is  a relative pronoun, it seems this sentence does not have verb. Could you explain why this  “that “ exists. And could you let me know what kind of a part of speech “that” is .And I would like you to give me similar example sentence which uses “that”  .

Answer
Hi Yasu,

first of all it's Amy or Ms Baker if you wish :)

Now to your sentence dilemma.

First, the North, a secretive communist dictatorship that claims it recently tested out a hydrogen bomb.

Maybe it would help if I'd rephrase the sentence above like this:

"First, there is the North, which is a secretive communist dictatorship that claims it recently tested out a hydrogen bomb."

Regardless, the verb in this sentence is "claims", and "that" is a demonstrative pronoun.

Similar examples:

There is this girl I met yesterday that looks like my best friend's daughter.
You will not find a dress that looks as good as the one you wore last weekend in this store.

I hope this helps, but please let me know if you need any more help with this or if you have any other questions.

Best,

~Amy  

English as a Second Language

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Amy Baker

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I can answer question about grammar, spelling, syntax, idioms, reading and/or writing that pertain to English as a Second Language. I am knowledgeable about both TOEFL and IELTS.

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I'm a certified ESL teacher with 12 years of experience teaching K-12 and adults.

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