North Korea challenges Trump with 'ballistic missile launch': Here's what you should know
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North Korea has reportedly fired a ballistic missile in its first such test since Donald Trump became president of the US. Details of the launch, including what type of missile it was, were scant. But Trump has backed early criticism by Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe, who is currently on a visit to the US. Here’s everything you need to know. What do we know about the launch so far? There was no immediate confirmation from the North, which had recently warned it’s ready to test its first intercontinental ballistic missile. South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff said the missile was fired early on Sunday from around Banghyon, in North Pyongan province. The military in Seoul said it flew about 310 miles – it’s believed to have splashed down into the sea between the Korean Peninsula and Japan. Japan’s chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga said the missile did not hit Japanese territorial seas. What type of missile was it? Kim Jong Un said in his New Year’s address that North Korea had reached the final stages of readiness to test an intercontinental ballistic missile, which would be a major step forward in its efforts to build a credible nuclear threat to the United States. But news agency Yonhap said that while determinations were still being made, the missile launched early on Sunday was not believed to be an intercontinental ballistic missile. Kim Dong-yeop – an analyst at the Institute for Far Eastern Studies in Seoul – speculated the missile could be a Musudan or a similar rocket designed to test engines for an intercontinental ballistic missile that could hit the US mainland.
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