North Korea Renews Accusation Of CIA Assassination Plot

Author

16 May, 2017

North Korea has claimed that the new type of ballistic missile it launched on Sunday is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.

While the outside world condemns North Korea's missile and nuclear tests, inside the country, state media say the weapons are needed to defend against a perceived threat from the United States and South Korea.

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - North Korea's latest ballistic missile test may be almost as big a deal as its propaganda machine claims.

On Sunday, the North successfully test-fired a new intermediate-range ballistic missile. Schilling also predicts the missile could have flown almost 2,800 miles (or about 4,500 kilometers) if launched on a maximum trajectory - which would put Guam within striking distance of North Korean missles but "won't greatly change the strategic balance" because "aside from Guam, there aren't really any interesting targets in that range".

North Korea has been testing missiles for weeks, and the status of their nuclear weapons development program has been a source of questions and concern for years.

The White House issued an unusual statement that said Sunday's missile landed closer to Russian Federation than Japan.

Melissa Hanham, senior research associate at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in California, told CNN the test could easily be seen as a stepping stone to a longer-range weapon, despite one Pentagon official saying the missile was "not consistent" with an ICBM.

But, he added: "We must stop intimidating North Korea and find a peaceful solution to this problem".

"The members of the Security Council agreed that the Security Council would continue to closely monitor the situation and take further significant measures including sanctions, in line with the Council's previously expressed determination", the Security Council said.

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"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.

China might support a new round of United Nations sanctions against North Korea after Pyongyang launched another missile test just hours before Beijing held its biggest diplomatic event of the year, the belt and road forum, observers said.

"The United States maintains our ironclad commitment to stand with our allies in the face of the serious threat posed by North Korea", the statement said.

That signalled a new phase in applying sanctions that curb exports of coal from North Korea, impose severe restrictions on banking and ban sales of luxury goods and equipment that could be of use to the military. The report also stated America's mainland and operations in the Pacific region are in North Korea's "sighting range for a strike and that it has all-powerful means for a retaliatory strike".

Moon kept open the possibility of an inter-Korea summit, initially proposed last Wednesday in his inaugural speech, but said it can only be held when Pyongyang "changes its behavior".

"More importantly", he added, it "may represent a substantial advance to developing an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM)". "This could also be an opportunity for China to show that it can initiate some plausible plans to handle the North Korea issue within the framework of the global community", Su said.

John Schilling, a North Korean analyst, wrote on 38 North that the regime's successful missile test represented a level of performance "never before seen" from a North Korean missile, adding that it would have flown a distance of some 4,500 kilometers if launched at a flatter trajectory, which would place all of South Korea, Japan and US military bases in Guam within its reach.

North Korea has been a flagrant menace for far too long.

U.S. President Donald Trump warned in an interview with Reuters this month that a "major, major conflict" with North Korea was possible.


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