Donald Trump blasts "disrespectful" North Korea for latest missile test

Nick Mcbride
May 30, 2017

North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile that landed in Japan's maritime economic zone Monday, officials said, in the latest in a string of test launches as the North seeks to build nuclear-tipped ICBMs that can reach the USA mainland.

Japan's Ministry of Defense said the missile was launched from the eastern coast town of Wonsan at approximately 5.40 a.m. local time and landed in the Sea of Japan having traveled for six minutes covering a distance of about 450 kilometers (280 miles).

Japan and South Korea strongly condemned Monday's missile launch, which landed in the former's exclusive economic maritime zone. North Korea said that projectile was a ground-to-ground strategic ballistic missile Pukguksong-2, state news agency KCNA reported.

U.S. President Donald Trump was briefed on the latest missile test, and on Monday morning, Trump logged onto Twitter to rail against it on behalf of China.

"We continue to monitor North Korea's actions closely", the statement said, adding that the United States has an "ironclad commitment to the security of our allies in the Republic of Korea and Japan". Scuds are capable of striking at American troops in South Korea, for instance, and two newly developed missiles tested earlier this month have potential ranges that include Japan, Guam and even, according to some South Korean analysts, Alaska. It has a strong arsenal of short- and medium-range missiles that could hit Japan and South Korea as well as USA forces in the region, and it is working to flawless its longer-range missiles.

"We will never tolerate North Korea's continued provocations that ignore repeated warnings by the worldwide community", Abe told reporters."As agreed during the G7 summit, the North Korean problem is the global community's top priority". It wasn't clear from the report when the test happened.

"That the North repeated such provocations after the inauguration of our new leadership... is a direct challenge to our demand for peace and denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula", the foreign ministry said.

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Two days later, South Korean troops fired warning shots at an "unidentified object" that flew across the heavily fortified border with North Korea, the South Korean military said.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters that "North Korea's provocation by ignoring repeated warnings from the global society is absolutely unacceptable".

Suga, the Japanese cabinet secretary, told reporters that the missile fell about 300 kilometers (190 miles) north of the Oki islands in southwestern Japan and 500 kilometers (310 miles) west of Sado island in central Japan.

May 26: Moon's government says it will allow a South Korean civic group to contact North Korea to help fight malaria.

The US vowed to cooperate with Japan and South Korea "to increase pressure on North Korea and demonstrate that North Korea's current path is not sustainable", a statement from the White House said.

Besides its regular ballistic missile test-launches, the North carried out two nuclear tests past year - in January and September.

North Korea has been stepping up efforts towards its ultimate goal - developing an intercontinental ballistic missile that can deliver a nuclear warhead to the continental US.

Other reports by VgToday

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