North Korea fires ballistic missile, South Korea says

Elias Hubbard
May 29, 2017

The unidentified projectile was sacked from the region of Wonsan on its east coast in an easterly direction, South Korea's military said, coming after a series of test-launches of missiles in recent weeks.

Earlier this month, North Korea claimed it had launched a missile large enough to carry "a "large, heavy nuclear warhead".

"Kim Jong Un. watched the test of a new type of anti-aircraft guided weapon system organised by the Academy of National Defence Science", KCNA said on Sunday. It landed in the sea within Japan's exclusive economic zone, according to the Japanese government. "I don't think North Korea has put a missile into the disputed area before, so I doubt this is a coincidence".

If it was a ballistic missile test, it would be North Korea's ninth this year, and this would be the third weekend in a row it has launched a missile, ABC News reported.

The Joint Chief of Staff of the South Korean army said that the projectile was "assumed to be a missile of the Scud series" and had a flight distance of 450 kilometres.

South Korea's President was immediately notified about the situation and ordered to convene a standing committee of the National Security Council (NSC) at 0730 KST, the JCS further said.

Under its leader's direction, the rogue state has in recent weeks tested its intermediate-range ballistic missile, making some technical advances.

It said there was no direct impact on the stock and foreign exchange markets following news reports about the missile launch. The report didn't say when the test happened.

"(T) he dollar has essentially traded sideways over the past few days, still reflecting a bit of softness from USA political uncertainty although on Friday, it benefited from. weakness (in the British pound)", said National Australia Bank Currency Strategist Rodrigo Catril.

"We call on the North to stop all provocations that block peace on the peninsula and in Northeast Asia and trigger military tensions, and take a path towards peace", Kim Yoo-jung, party spokeswoman, said.

"The missile was tracked for six minutes until it landed in the Sea of Japan", it said in a statement. South Korea approved Friday, May 26, 2017, a civic group to contact North Korea over aid programs, the first such approval since North Korea's nuclear test in January 2016.

But China, the North's main trade partner and ally, has made it clear that the push for diplomatic talks - and not imposing more sanctions - is the priority.

"The United States government is aware".

"We can not tolerate repeated provocations".

With U.S. markets closed on Monday for the Memorial Day holiday, major currency pairs were likely to tread water, with no incentive to take new positions. Some previous North Korean missile launches caused some yen selling, but market participants have become less concerned by North Korea's actions over time.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters that "North Korea's provocation by ignoring repeated warnings from the worldwide society is absolutely unacceptable".

It last conducted a ballistic missile test a week ago.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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