North Korea fires ballistic missile: South Korea military

15 May, 2017, 00:15 | Author: Essie Rivera
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"North Korea's repeated firing of ballistic missile is a grave threat to the country (Japan), and a clear violation of the US Security Council's resolutions", Abe told the media ahead of Japan's national security meeting.

Meanwhile, a U.S. defense official said spy satellites are continuing to pick up signs of movement of scud missiles in North Korea that indicate preparations for a potential launch. "All sides should exercise restraint and refrain from taking actions that would further escalate tensions in the region", a statement from China's Foreign Ministry said.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in has strongly condemned rival North Korea's missile test-launch as a "clear" violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions and a "serious challenge" to worldwide peace and security.

Past North Korean missiles have flown farther than Sunday's test, landing closer to Japan, but this launch follows a series of high-profile failures.

Choe was returning from Oslo, the capital of Norway, with a North Korean delegation after holding talks with former US officials there, the first such dialogue since the start of the Trump administration.

North Korea, however, has vowed to continue with its quest to marry a miniaturised nuclear warhead with a missile capable of reaching the USA mainland to counter what it calls American "aggression".

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.

"With the missile impacting so close to Russian soil - in fact, closer to Russia than to Japan - the President can not imagine that Russia is pleased", the statement said.

South Korea's President Moon Jae-in has strongly condemned the launch, saying there was still the possibility of dialogue with North Korea but that Seoul would deal sternly with any such provocations.

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"The launch may indeed represent a new missile with a long range", said Jonathan McDowell of the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, referring to the estimated altitude of more than 2,000 km (1,240 miles). The launch has already been criticized by a number of countries, including the United States.

Pyongyang's test launch of a long-range missile tests appears to have deeply upset almost everyone with a stake in the current nuclear stand-off, including ally Beijing, arch-rival Seoul, an increasingly belligerent Washington, long-time adversary Tokyo and former friend Moscow.

Moon also ordered Seoul's military to maintain readiness, and to work closely with the USA to prepare for "any military provocation" by Pyongyang.

Moon, the first liberal leader in Seoul in almost a decade, said as he took his oath of office that he'd be willing to visit the North if the circumstances were right.

Moon, a liberal who favors a more open policy toward North Korea, won the presidential election this week.

"We'll have dialogue if the conditions are there", she said.

"This is a clear violation of the US Security Council resolutions, and a grave challenge against global peace and security", Moon said.

"If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, I would be honored to do it", Trump said in the interview.

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