BEIJING — North Korea on Tuesday claimed it had successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile, a potential milestone in its campaign to develop a nuclear-tipped weapon capable of hitting the mainland United States.
In a special announcement on state television, North Korea said it launched a Hwasong-14 missile that flew about 579 miles, reaching an altitude of 1,741 miles. The U.S. military said it was in the air for 37 minutes, a duration that signals a significant improvement in North Korea’s technology, experts said.
South Korean and Japanese authorities are now looking into whether it was indeed an ICBM; U.S. Pacific Command’s first statement on the test called it an intermediate range missile.
Whatever the missile’s classification, Tuesday’s news will renew questions about the development of weapons that Trump, as president-elect, vowed to stop. It also looks set to put North Korea back at the top of the president’s agenda, most immediately at Group of 20 meetings in Germany this week.
As news of the test broke, but before North Korea claimed it was an ICBM, Trump took to Twitter, calling out North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and appearing to once again urge China to do more to pressure him.
“North Korea has just launched another missile. Does this guy have anything better to do with his life?” Trump wrote.
Article source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/north-korea-claims-successful-intercontinental-ballistic-missile-test-defying-international-condemnation/2017/07/04/4f804488-609c-11e7-8adc-fea80e32bf47_story.html
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