Japan protests North Korea missile, warns of danger to planes, ships

Cornelia Mascio
Mag 29, 2017

That missile was successfully launched near the North Korean coastal city of Wonsan and flew about six miles before falling into the Sea of Japan.

"We can not tolerate North Korea's repeated provocations in defiance of warnings from the worldwide society", Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters in his office.

Suga said the government will talk about how to deal with North Korean with Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi, the country's top diplomat, who is scheduled to visit Japan later in the day.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un laughs with Ri Pyong Chol in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on May 15, 2017.

If North Korea was recognised as a nuclear weapons state, "then Japan and (South) Korea would have little option than to develop their own nuclear weapons capability", Bishop said.

After the test, Kim said the weapon system's ability to detect and track targets had "remarkably" improved and its accuracy also increased, according to the official Korean Central News Agency. "I don't think North Korea has put a missile into the disputed area before, so I doubt this is a coincidence".

Japan protested the firing of the missile that appears to have landed in the Sea of Japan. It says the program is necessary to counter USA aggression.

It was the third ballistic missile test-launch since South Korea's liberal President Moon Jae-in took office on May 10 pledging to engage the reclusive state in dialogue.

This launch is North Korea's third in three weeks and its 12th this year, underscoring Kim Jong Un's determination to advance his regime's technical capabilities and his continued defiance of the worldwide community.

And a week before, on Sunday May 14, North Korea launched its Hwasong-12 intermediate range ballistic missile, a type that could be capable of traveling up to 4,500km.

The White House said President Donald Trump has been briefed about the launch. Depending on the missile's range, however, US and South Korean forces may be able to neutralize specific KN-06 batteries with longer-range stand-off weapons.

Three previous similar tests happened a week ago.

On Saturday, Group of Seven leaders presented a united front on the North Korean nuclear issue, urging the North to halt its nuclear and missile programs or face bolstered measures.

Sky News reported Kim said the system will stop attackers from "boasting of air supremacy and weapon almighty".

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