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Kim Jong Un urges 'right choice' by United States after missile test

18 May 2017

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Sunday observed the test launch of a new ballistic missile that can carry a large nuclear warhead and has the US mainland within striking range, state media claimed Monday.

"The test-fire aimed at verifying the tactical and technological specifications of the newly developed ballistic rocket capable of carrying a large-size heavy nuclear warhead", the KCNA report stated.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un inspects a Hwasong-12 in an undated photo released by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Monday.

That suggests a range of 4,500 kilometres (2,800 miles) or more if flown for maximum distance, analysts said.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said on ABC television that the United States has been working well with China, Pyongyang's closest ally, and raised the possibility of new sanctions against North Korea, including on oil imports.

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"North Korea's latest successful missile test represents a level of performance never before seen from a North Korean missile", said John Schilling, an aerospace engineer who specialises in rockets.

The Security Council has adopted six increasingly tougher sanctions resolutions against North Korea.

Over the weekend, North Korean officials said they're open to talks under the right circumstances, but USA officials say that missile launches like this one shatter the prospect of dialogue at least any time soon.

The White House in a statement said the "latest provocation" shows a need for all countries to implement stronger sanctions against North Korea, and singled out Russian Federation.

North Korea's past satellite rocket launches have been called clandestine tests of ICBM technology, but it is not thought to have tested a true intercontinental ballistic missile yet.

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U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned Sunday that the global community will "continue to tighten the screws" around the North Korean regime.

The country launched a new type of missile into the sea of Japan earlier this week, and South Korean Defence Minister Han Min-koo told Parliament the test was "successful in flight".

Russian President Vladimir Putin weighed in Monday morning, calling the test "counterproductive" and "dangerous", but he also suggested the USA and it's regional allies could bear some of the blame, saying "we must stop intimidating North Korea". "We consider (the missile test) counter-productive, harmful and dangerous".

The missile was launched on an unusually vertical trajectory.

Han said North Korea's missile development was progressing faster than expected.

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"We need to return to dialogue with North Korea and stop scaring it and find ways to resolve these problems peacefully".

Kim Jong Un urges 'right choice' by United States after missile test