North Korea says missile test shows all US within range
North Korea has hailed as a success its latest test of an intercontinental ballistic missile describing it as a “stern warning” for the US.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said the test proved that the entire US was within striking range, state media reported.
The launch came three weeks after North Korea’s first ICBM test.
US President Donald Trump called it “only the latest reckless and dangerous action by the North Korean regime”.
Confirming the launch, the North said the ICBM flew for just over 47 minutes and reached an altitude of 3,724km (2,300 miles).
It said the launch had “successfully tested re-entry capabilities” of the missile.
“The leader said proudly the test also confirmed all the US mainland is within our striking range,” the Korean Central News Agency said.
The statement said that the rocket was a Hwasong-14, the same model North Korea tested on 3 July.
Reports on Friday said the missile had come down in the sea off northern Japan.
In response, the US and South Korean military conducted a live-firing exercise using surface-to-surface missiles, a US defence official said.
The missiles were fired into the “territorial waters of South Korea along the east coast,” a US military statement said.
South Korean Defence Minister Song Young-moo said the country would prepare independent measures to curb the North Korea threat, speeding up the deployment of the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense system (Thaad) provided by the US.
The North has repeatedly tested missiles in breach of UN resolutions.
The Pentagon said the latest missile was launched at 23:41 (15:41 GMT) from an arms plant in Jagang province in the north of the country.
It is unusual for North Korea to launch a missile at night – the significance is as yet unclear. No missiles had been fired from Jagang province before, indicating a previously-unknown launch site is operational.
ICBMs can reach altitudes well outside the earth’s atmosphere. Using sharp trajectories with high altitudes allows North Korea to avoid firing over neighbouring countries. BBC News