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N.Korea to soon test ICBM: State media
19 June 2017, 12:55 | Kara Nash
Donald Trump and Xi Jinping. Carlos Barria Reuters
The missiles are the fourth new system the hermit state has tested this year, sending a defiant message that it will continue to pursue a weapons program that has rattled Washington.
North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) announced on June 9 that the communist state had test-launched a new type of cruise missile capable of striking US and South Korean warships off its coast.
That was in response to previous ballistic missile tests that violate United Nations sanctions.
In typical propaganda fashion, the report said "the launched cruise rockets accurately detected and hit the floating targets".
U.S. State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said Thursday the resumption of talks with North Korea on the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula is made more hard by Pyongyang's increasingly frequent missile tests.
The US have contraversially began installing the THAAD anti-ballistic missile system on South Korea in a bid to nip Kim Jong-un's budding nuclear capability in the bud.
Nauert said the suspension of THAAD deployment is "part of the conversations" that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis had with President Donald Trump at an Oval Office meeting on Thursday.
The joint celebration took place in Seoul and Pyongyang between 2003 and 2008 but has since been idle amid Pyongyang's military provocations and strained cross-border relations.
"It is incumbent on us to assume that North Korea today can range the United States with an ICBM carrying a nuclear warhead", Vice-Admiral James Syring, director of the MDA, told the House Armed Services Committee. That commitment remains ironclad.
"We'll be conducting more missile tests on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis", Vice Foreign Minister Han Song Ryol said at the time. In the coming weeks, they launched a solid-fuel midrange missile that was described as "precision-guided", which experts say is equipped with a maneuverable terminal stage meant to combat missile defense systems like the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense that is deployed in South Korea. The improved range indicates the North is pursuing weapons capable of reaching US aircraft carriers that operate from deeper positions, he said.
A screen shows a news program reporting about North Korea's missile firing from Wonsan, center, Thursday, June 8, 2017, in Tokyo.
Its appearance a day after Pyongyang tested a new type of anti-ship missile on Thursday, could spark questions about the state of South Korea's air defences at a time when Seoul is trying to rein in the North's nuclear and missile programmes.
Moon said after the new launches that his government "won't back off even a single step and make any compromise" on the issue of national security.
China has called on Pyongyang to suspend its testing while calling on the USA to stop military exercises on and near the Korean Peninsula, which North Korea sees as a threat to its sovereignty.
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