Tensions raised after North Korea fires missile into Japanese waters

Under a range of United Nations Security Council resolutions, North Korea is banned from launching ballistic missiles or conducting tests using ballistic missile or nuclear technology.

Quoting South Korean military, the report said the missile landed inside Japan's Exclusive Economic Zone, in the Sea of Japan.

He said Japan will "take concrete steps with the U.S. in order to deter North Korea", although he did not elaborate on specific actions.

"Saying with pride that the missile's rate of hits is very accurate and Pukguksong-2 is a successful strategic weapon, he approved the deployment of this weapon system for action", KCNA said.

State-run KCNA news service said Kim a May 21 test launch from an observation post and "expressed his great satisfaction" with the results.

On May 14, North Korea fired what the USA calls a KN-17 medium range missile that reached an unprecedented altitude of 2,000 kilometers (1,245 miles). It wasn't clear from the state media report when the test happened. "Working with the United States, we will take specific action to deter North Korea". The missile flies about 60 kilometers (40 miles) before falling into the sea.

"We'll be conducting more missile tests on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis", Vice-Foreign Minister Han Song-ryol told the BBC at the time.

South Korea's new president Moon Jae-In ordered a meeting of the national security council to assess the launch, which came a day after North Korea said its leader Kim Jong-Un had overseen a test of a new anti-aircraft weapons system. The command said it was working on a more detailed assessment of the missile launch. A reportedly nuclear-capable missile was launched just a week after North Korea launched its Hwasong-12 rocket.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who had just returned from a G7 meeting in Italy, told reporters: "North Korea's provocation by ignoring repeated warning from the global society is absolutely unacceptable".

North Korea already deploys Scud-class missiles for combat use.

The White House said President Donald Trump had been briefed about the launch.

"And we hope all relevant sides maintain calm and exercise restraint, ease the tense situation as soon as possible and put the issue back onto the correct track of peaceful dialogue". He has signaled an interest in expanding civilian exchange with North Korea, but it's unclear if he'll be able to push anytime soon for major rapprochement because Pyongyang continues to make serious advances in its nuclear and missile program.

  • Leroy Wright