More reports on: Missiles, munition

N Korea defies UN again with second missile over Japan

15 September 2017

North Korea greeted the fresh sanctions imposed by the United Nations on it by firing another missile over Japan, early today, in signs that the rouge regime of Kim Jong Un will continue to remain a threat to peace.

The intermediate-range missile, launched at about 6:57 am flew over Japan's Hokkaido island and covered a distance of about 3,700 km before splashing down in the Pacific Ocean.

The Japanese government said the missile was launched at around 6:57 am and fell into waters about 2,200 km east of Hokkaido's Cape Erimo at around 7:16 a m.

The missile fired from Pyongyang flew 3,700 km and reached an altitude of 770 km, South Korea's joint chief of staff said

Japan didn't attempt to shoot down the missile as it flew over the northern island of Hokkaido, according to Japan's top government spokesman.

The launch, however, triggered the nation's J-Alert warning system, which advised people in Hokkaido and 11 prefectures, including Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Akita, Yamagata, Fukushima, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, Niigata and Nagano, to take precautions.

An initial assessment indicated that it was an intermediate range ballistic missile (ICBM), US Pacific Command said in a statement.

The missile, however, covered a 3,700km, a distance further than the 3,400 km to Guam - the American military base that North Korea had threatened to destroy.

The missile fired on 29 August over Japan travelled 2,700 km and reached an altitude of 550 km.

The UN Security Council is expected to meet in New York at 3 pm local time to review the situation.

The UN imposed harsher sanctions on North Korea after the country tested what it called a hydrogen bomb on 3 September, and launched more than a dozen missiles this year as Kim sought the capability to hit US with an atomic weapon.

Monday's UN sanctions were, however, had watered down the tougher draft of a resolution for a full-scope embargo prepared by the US, in order to win the support of Beijing and Moscow, the two countries still on North Korea's side.

North Korea had on Thursday threatened to sink Japan ''into the sea'' with a nuclear strike and turn the US into ''ashes and darkness'' for agreeing to the latest UN sanctions.

''These continued provocations only deepen North Korea's diplomatic and economic isolation,'' US secretary Rex Tillerson said in a statement. Tillerson also reiterated a call for China and Russia to take action against the rogue state, saying: ''China supplies North Korea with most of its oil. Russia is the largest employer of North Korean forced labour.''

President Donald Trump has said all options - including military - are on the table to stop North Korea from threatening the US.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called for a unified international response to North Korean provocation.

South Korea's foreign ministry condemned the launch in a statement, and urged its neighbour to stop its ''reckless provocation''.

The Japanese yen pared gains spurred by news of the launch while the stock market was yet to react. In South Korea, the cost of insuring five-year sovereign bonds rose the most in a week.

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