North Korea says it test-fired an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on Thursday in order to prepare for “the long-standing confrontation” with Washington. This was the first launch of a long-range missile like this by Pyongyang since 2017.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un ordered the test of the missile, a Hwasong-17, because of the “daily-escalating military tension in and round the Korean peninsula” and the “inevitability of the long-standing confrontation with the US,” state-run news agency KCNA said.
It traveled 1,090km (677 miles) before it landed in the Sea of Japan. Kim was present at the launch site and supervised the testing. The weapon adds to the country’s nuclear arsenal aimed at “humbling”Washington,” KCNA stated. The ICBMs have a long range and can be used to reach the US.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres condemned the launch, saying it “risks a significant escalation of tensions in the region.” White House spokesperson Jen Psaki said the launch was “a brazen violation”Resolutions of the UN Security Council
South Korea test-fired several missiles on Thursday in an apparent response to the North’s launch. Pyongyang was warned by Yoon Suk-yeol, the President-elect. “nothing can be gained from provocations.”In an effort to reduce tensions, the neighboring countries restored communication lines in an attempt at easing tensions.
The talks regarding North Korea’s nuclear program ended in disarray after the no-deal summit held between Kim and US President Donald Trump in Hanoi (Vietnam) in 2019.
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