Thursday, 14 December, 2017

North Korea test-fires first missile under a Trump presidency

North Korea test-fires first missile under a Trump presidency North Korea test-fires first missile under a Trump presidency
Lance Thomas | 14 February, 2017, 13:13

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose country would be in range of any hostile North Korean launch, called the test "absolutely intolerable" during an impromptu press conference with Trump in Florida.

That assessment reflected concern as well as frustration among U.S. officials, who see North Korea pushing ahead, in defiance of United Nations resolutions, with development of missiles capable of striking USA territory with nuclear weapons.

The United States, Japan and South Korea called for U.N. Security Council consultations, a USA official told NBC News on Sunday. While Abe condemned the test as "absolutely intolerable", the U.S. president responded by stating that "America stands behind Japan, its great ally, 100%".

China's stance is that the North Korean nuclear issue is rooted in conflicts between North Korea and the U.S., and North Korea and South Korea, Geng said, urging them to maintain peace.

"The United States of America stands behind Japan, its great ally, 100 percent": US President Donald Trump.

North Korea test-fired a Pukguksong-2 ballistic missile during the weekend.

The ministry said the type of missile was yet to be identified, adding that the missile launched seemed to be aimed at "drawing global attention to the North by boasting its nuclear and missile capabilities".

Malcolm Turnbull called on North Korea to "cease its provocative behaviour".

North Korea test-fires first missile under a Trump presidency
North Korea test-fires first missile under a Trump presidency

A South Korean defense official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of department rules, also said that United States and South Korean military surveillance equipment showed it probably used solid fuel.

While Japan insisted that the missile had not reached their sea border they said they would make a "strong protest" over the launch.

Kim Jong Un's regime hadn't tested a ballistic missile since October 20. One launch that sent a missile 400km more than half the distance to Japan, was considered a success by officials and experts in the South and the United States.

What is worrying is the turmoil in South Korea's domestic politics.

"Pyongyang's development of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles has become a severe annoyance for Northeast Asia".

The North tried to launch a Musudan eight times past year, but most attempts failed.

South Korea's Acting President and Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn said that his country will punish North Korea for the missile launch.

Pyongyang's lack of serious missile test in November, December, and January suggested that it may have been waiting for the Trump administration to enter office and possibly revisit the Obama administration's North Korea policy. What is changing, however, is the fact that the North is getting closer to its goal of developing longer-range nuclear weapons.

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