North Korea fired medium-range missile - Pentagon

Share

Japan was pushing the United States to propose new UN Security Council sanctions, which diplomats said could target North Korea's labourers working overseas, oil supply and textile exports.

The latest test has prompted Tokyo to call for more sanctions against the relatively isolated country.

The test comes one day after North Korea fired a ballistic missile from its capital Pyongyang that flew over Japan before plunging into the northern Pacific Ocean.

After the North's two successful tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles in July - including one that experts say potentially puts Chicago and Los Angeles within range - U.S. President Donald Trump vowed the following month to rain down "fire and fury" on Pyongyang if it endangered the United States.

The operation involved two B-1Bs from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam; four U.S. Marine F-35Bs from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan; two Koku Jieitai (Japan Air Self-Defense Force) F-15Js; and four Republic of Korea Air Force (ROKAF) F-15Ks. Their PM, Shinzo Abe, called it a "reckless action is an unprecedented, serious and grave threat to our nation" and demanding a UN Security Council meeting later today.

The missile, which stoked concern in Tokyo after landing in the Pacific Ocean about 1,200 kilometers east of the northernmost prefecture, comes amid North Korea's ramped-up pace of missile and weapons tests, including two nuclear detonations past year.

Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera had also phoned Mr Mattis, and both men agreed to keep putting pressure on North Korea in a "visible" form, according to the Defence Ministry in Tokyo.

South Korea's President Moon Jae-in said the drills are defensive in nature and are held regularly because of repeated provocations by North Korea.


North Korea said Friday its latest missile firing is a warning against increasing military cooperation between Japan and the U.S., comparing it to their secret deal in 1905 that paved the way to Tokyo's colonization of Korea.

"I can not tell you about our forthcoming response to North Korea, but we have just completely agreed on it", Abe told reporters at his office after his latest call with Trump on Thursday.

In other words, accepting the fact of North Korea's nuclear status is not the ideal solution.

The United States and South Korea are technically still at war with North Korea because their 1950-53 conflict ended in a truce, not a peace treaty. Sailors aboard the destroyer USS John Paul Jones tracked it with radar and fired an interceptor missile to shoot it down.

Such missiles, which would be the latest additions to South Korea's Hyumoo family of missiles, are considered key components of the so-called "kill chain" pre-emptive strike capability that South Korea is pursuing to counter North Korea's nuclear and missile threat.

"It's another provocation by North Korea, they just seem to continue to happen", United States envoy Robert Wood told reporters in Geneva.

North Korea will no doubt be watching the world's reaction to see if it can use Tuesday's flight over Japan as a precedent for future launches. As the New York Times reported, "Over the years, the United States has given money to North Korea for humanitarian assistance".

He was going to keep an eye on "the foolish and stupid Yankees" a bit longer, KCNA quoted him as saying, making it clear he was talking about the joint US-South Korean military exercises starting on August 21. After more than three weeks went by following a 28 July ICBM test, the USA secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, hailed North Korean "restraint" and suggested: "Perhaps we are seeing our pathway to some time in the near future having some dialogue".

Share