North Korea said on Wednesday it had conducted a test of a newly developed intercontinental ballistic missile that can carry a large and heavy nuclear warhead, triggering a call by Washington for global action to hold Pyongyang accountable for its pursuit of nuclear weapons.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the successful test completed the country’s strategic weapons capability that includes atomic and hydrogen bombs and ICBMs.
He added Pyongyang would not negotiate with the United States to give up those weapons until Washington abandons its hostile policy against the North, the country’s KCNA news agency said.
The test on Tuesday successfully verified the technical requirements of the newly developed ICBM in stage separation, the atmospheric re-entry of the warhead and the late-stage control of the warhead, KCNA said.
A spokeswoman for the Pentagon said the United States had concluded that North Korea test-launched an ICBM.
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called for international action, saying the test was a new escalation of Pyongyang’s nuclear threat.
In a statement, Tillerson warned that any country that hosts North Korea workers, provides economic or military aid to Pyongyang, or fails to implement U.N. sanctions “is aiding and abetting a dangerous regime.”
“All nations should publicly demonstrate to North Korea that there are consequences to their pursuit of nuclear weapons,” Tillerson said.
The U.N. Security Council will hold an emergency meeting on the matter at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT) on Wednesday, following a request by the United States, Japan and South Korea.
The North’s state media said the missile, Hwasong-14, flew 933 km (580 miles), reaching an altitude of 2,802 km (1,741 miles) over a flight time of 39 minutes.
Some analysts said the flight details suggested the new missile had a range of more than 8,000 km (4,970 miles), which would put significant parts of the U.S. mainland in range, representing major advances in its program. (Courtesy Reuters)