UN Security Council vows sanctions over N. Korea missile test

Posted May 16, 2017

The White House took note of the missile landing close to Russia's Pacific coast and said that North Korea has been "a flagrant menace for far too long".

The North's KCNA news agency said Sunday's test launch verified the homing feature of the warhead that allowed it to survive "under the worst re-entry situation" and accurately detonate.

"The test-fire aimed at verifying the tactical and technological specifications of the newly developed ballistic rocket capable of carrying a large-size heavy nuclear warhead", the KCNA report stated.

Beijing also denounced the missile test, which violated U.N. Security Council resolutions banning North Korea from using ballistic-missile technology.

"That's not the full operational seamless capability that we want but it has an initial ability to be able to defeat North Korean missiles", he said.

The country's leader, Kim Jong Un, supervised the launch of the Hwasong-12 missile that reached an altitude of 2,111.5 kilometers (1,312 miles) and flew 787 kilometers (489 miles), KCNA said.

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After years of missile tests by North Korea that have come as part of the nation's effort to build an intercontinental ballistic missile that could launch a nuclear warhead, this latest test is garnering much attention by those watching North Korea for major signs of advancement.

There's also skepticism about North Korea's claims about its re-entry technology, which is needed to return a warhead to the atmosphere from space so it can hit its intended target.

The defense ministers of Japan and South Korea affirmed Monday that they will work closely with each other and with the United States following North Korea's latest ballistic missile launch the previous day, the Japanese Defense Ministry said.

Six-party talks involving the North, the U.S., South Korea, Russia, China and Japan broke down in 2009. North Korea also has conducted three of five underground nuclear tests under the younger Kim's regime.

"I want to confirm that we are categorically against the expansion of the club of nuclear powers, including with the Korean peninsula and North Korea", said Putin, who said any such move would be "harmful and dangerous".

"We recently completed the deployment of the first battery there".

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Putin did not specify what countries he had in mind, but he has in the past repeatedly criticized the United States for military operations in Iraq, Libya and Syria, and accused it of trying to oust legitimate governments.

The North has successfully launched long-range rockets twice to put objects into space, although many experts believed it was some years away from mastering the re-entry technology needed to ideal an ICBM. The United States and its allies have been on alert for the North to test an ICBM, which would have the range to reach the US mainland, since leader Kim Jong Un said his country was on the verge of being able to do so.

Describing the missile launch as a "grave provocative act that damages the peace and security of the region and the worldwide community", Inada relayed to her counterpart Japan's intention to beef up its cooperation with the new South Korean government under President Moon Jae In. American and South Korean experts don't believe it has the capacity yet, though Pyongyang claims differently.

Kim was quoted as warning the USA that if it ever "awkwardly attempts to provoke" his country, it will face the "biggest disaster" in history.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday the North's latest missile test was risky, but warned against attempts to "intimidate" Pyongyang.

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