North Korea has test-fired a new type of intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) called Hwasongpho-17, a move that drew international condemnation.
This is the reclusive country’s first full ICBM test since 2017.
State-owned news agency KCNA said that the test was ordered by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as it will serve as a key weapon system to deter nuclear war in the future.
The Hwasongpho-17 was launched from a site near Pyongyang International Airport and it reached an altitude of 6,248.5km and travelled 1,090km before finally hitting a pre-selected area in open waters of the East Sea.
According to KNCA, the statement added: “The test-launch clearly proved that all the parameters of the weapon system exactly met the design requirements and that its prompt operation can be guaranteed scientifically, technically and practically under wartime environment and conditions.”
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The new ICBM was first unveiled by North Korea in 2020 during a military parade, Reuters reported. The missile was larger than the Hwasong-15, which was tested in November 2017.
The latest test was condemned by the US, South Korea and Japan.
In a statement, the US Indo-Pacific Command said: “We are aware of the DPRK’s ballistic missile launch today and are consulting closely with the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan, as well as other allies and partners.
“The US condemns these actions and calls on the DPRK to refrain from further destabilising acts.”
North Korea has significantly increased missile testing this year.
Earlier this year, the reclusive nation tested the Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM).
Meanwhile, the US increased surveillance and reconnaissance collection in the Yellow Sea in response to the increasing number of missile launches.