Date
12 December 2017
North Korea's latest missile launch was supervised by leader Kim Jong-un, according to state media. It was conducted to test a newly developed mid to long-range rocket. Photo: Reuters
North Korea's latest missile launch was supervised by leader Kim Jong-un, according to state media. It was conducted to test a newly developed mid to long-range rocket. Photo: Reuters

N Korea conducts fresh ballistic missile test

North Korea said on Monday it had successfully conducted a newly developed mid-to-long range missile test on Sunday, supervised by leader Kim Jong-un and aimed at verifying the capability to carry a “large-scale heavy nuclear warhead”, Reuters reports

Kim accused the United States of “browbeating” countries that “have no nukes” and warned Washington not to misjudge the reality that its mainland is in the North’s “sighting range for strike”, the North’s official KCNA news agency reported.

The North fired a ballistic missile that landed in the sea near Russia on Sunday in a launch that Washington called a message to South Korea, days after its new president took office pledging to engage Pyongyang in dialogue.

The missile was launched at the highest angle so as not to affect the security of neighboring countries and flew 787 kilometers (490 miles) reaching an altitude of 2,111.5 kilometers (1,312 miles), KCNA said.

Experts said the altitude reached by the missile tested on Sunday meant it was launched at a high trajectory, which would limit the lateral distance it traveled. But if it was fired at a standard trajectory, it would have a range of at least 4,000 km. (2,500 miles), experts said.

“The test-fire aimed at verifying the tactical and technological specifications of the newly developed ballistic rocket capable of carrying a large heavy nuclear warhead,” KCNA said.

“If the US awkwardly attempts to provoke the DPRK, it will not escape from the biggest disaster in the history, Kim said, strongly warning the US should not disregard or misjudge the reality that its mainland and Pacific operation region are in the DPRK’s sighting range for strike and that it has all powerful means for retaliatory strike,” KCNA said.

The United Nations Security Council is due to meet on Tuesday to discuss North Korea’s latest missile launch, diplomats said on Sunday, which was requested by the United States and allies South Korea and Japan.

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley called the launch a message by Pyongyang to South Korea after the election of President Moon Jae-in, who took office on Wednesday.

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RC/RA

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