new type tactical guided – North Korea
North Korea claims 'new tactical guided' missiles launched
new type tactical guided
North Korea has claimed the missiles it launched Thursday
were a “new-type tactical guided projectile”,
in its first statement since the test.
It was the country’s first ballistic launch in almost a year
and the first since Joe Biden became US President.
Mr Biden has said the US will “respond accordingly”.
The US, Japan and South Korea have condemned the tests.
Under UN Security Council resolutions, North Korea is banned
from testing ballistic missiles.
The country’s Friday statement, issued through state media outlet KCNA,
says the two weapons struck a test target 600km (373 miles) off
North Korea’s east coast, disputing Japanese assessments that
they flew just over 400km.
It added that the new missile is able to carry a payload of 2.5 tons,
which would make it capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.
“The development of this weapon system is of great significance
in bolstering up the military power of the country and deterring
all sorts of military threats,” Ri Pyong Chol, the senior leader who o
versaw the test, was quoted as saying.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was not present.
The question I always get asked is why is North Korea testing now?
There’s no easy answer to this. First, because they can
and Pyongyang has new weapons to try out.
But the recent messages warning the United States not
to cause “a stink” and that the Biden administration would
“pay a price” would suggest the North is making a point.
South Korea’s spy agency said it believed North Korea had timed
the missile launch ahead of President Biden’s press conference.
It also claimed that Pyongyang was protesting against the extradition
of its citizen, Mun Chol Myong from Malaysia to the US,
and the recent UN Human Rights Council resolution against North Korea.
The front page of the state newspaper showed Kim Jong-un checking out
new passenger buses not supervising the test of new missiles.
Mr Kim is flexing his military muscles for the world but trying
to portray an image of economic reformer to his people.
Mr Biden told reporters that the launch was a violation of UN
resolutions and that the US was consulting with partners and allies.
“There will be responses – if they choose to escalate, we will respond accordingly,” he said.
“But I’m also prepared for some form of diplomacy, but it has to
be conditioned upon the end result of denuclearization.”
have launched. State media said it had an “improved version of a solid
fuel engine” and described it as a tactical guided missile that could perform
“gliding and pull-up” maneuvers, which could mean it is harder to intercept.
But the test highlights the progress the country’s weapons program
has seen since denuclearization talks with the US stalled under
former President Donald Trump.