N.Korea says missile test part of defense effort

N.Korea says missile test part of defense effort

N.Korea says missile test part of defense effort

Trump and new South Korean President Moon Jae-in will meet in Washington next month, with North Korea expected to be high on the agenda, the South's presidential Blue House said.

The missile, which flew 430 miles and reached an altitude of more than 1,245 miles, went further and higher than the nation's last successful test launch.

"You first have to get into Kim Jong Un's head - which is, he's in a state of paranoia, he's incredibly concerned about anything and everything around him", Haley told ABC's "This Week" program, referring to North Korea's leader.

North Korea says the medium long-range strategic missile it tested over the weekend can carry a nuclear warhead.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is condemning the latest North Korean ballistic missile test as a violation of Security Council resolutions and a threat to peace and security in the region.

Sunday's launch was the North's seventh missile test this year.

North Korea's latest ballistic missile test may be almost as big a deal as its propaganda machine claims. Tokyo says the flight pattern could indicate a new type of missile.

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Leader Kim Jong Un was said to have witnessed the test and "hugged officials in the field of rocket research, saying that they worked hard to achieve a great thing", according to KCNA.

North Korea on Monday (May 15) celebrated the launch of what appeared to be its longest-range ballistic missile yet tested in a bid to bring the American mainland within striking reach, saying it was capable of carrying a "heavy nuclear warhead".

South Korea's Defense Ministry said more analysis is needed to verify the North's claim on the rocket's technological features.

Lee declined to give the government's assessment of North Korea's intention, stating the need to take into account factors related to inter-Korean relations, including possible dialogue.

Swedish U.N. Ambassador Olof Skoog said the council needs a firm, united response but "we also feel there needs to be openness for a conversation for dialogue".

"The DPRK will bolster its self-defence capabilities as long as the United States continues its hostile policies towards the DPRK and imposes nuclear threats and makes blackmail", he said.

The launch also comes as troops from the U.S., Japan and two European nations gather near Guam for drills that are partly a message to North Korea.

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In a unanimously agreed statement, the 15-member UN Security Council said it was of vital importance that North Korea show "sincere commitment to denuclearisation through concrete action and stressed the importance of working to reduce tensions".

Moon, South Korea's first liberal leader in almost a decade, said as he took his oath of office last week that he would be willing to visit the North if the circumstances were right.

North Korea is banned under United Nations resolutions from engaging in nuclear and missile development, but has conducted its fifth nuclear test and a string of missile launches since the start of previous year.

The United States is also in talks with China on a possible new sanctions resolution that would ratchet up the pressure on Pyongyang.

"It appears to have not only demonstrated an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) that might enable them to reliably strike the USA base at Guam, but more importantly, may represent a substantial advance to developing an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM)", it said.

The country's official Korean Central News Agency said the missile fired Sunday, May 14, 2017, was a Hwasong-12 "capable of carrying a large-size heavy nuclear warhead".

"If the US awkwardly attempts to provoke the DPRK, it will not escape from the biggest disaster in the history, Kim said, strongly warning the USA should not to disregard or misjudge the reality that its mainland and Pacific operation region are in the DPRK's sighting range for strike and that it has all powerful means for retaliatory strike", KCNA said.

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"Having a missile test is not the way to sit down with the president, because he's absolutely not going to do it", Nikki Haley, the USA ambassador to the United Nations, told "This Week".

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