Security Council condemns NKorea missile test

The council has condemned all five of North Korea's launches this year.

On Monday, Pyongyang made the extraordinary claim that its latest test proved the country had a rocket capable of carrying a large nuclear warhead and that the U.S. mainland and its military base on the Pacific island of Guam were now within its "sighting range for strike".

State media paraphrased North Korea's leader as saying that "the most flawless weapon systems in the world will never become the eternal exclusive property of the USA", warning that "the US should not. disregard or misjudge the reality that its mainland and Pacific operation region are in (North Korea's) sighting range for strike".

North Korea leader Kim Jong Un supervises a test-fire of a ground-to-ground ballistic missile. The US said it terminated flight just 96 kilometers (60 miles) from the Russian port city of Vladivostock, whereas the Russian Defense Ministry said it landed 500 kilometers (311 miles) from its Pacific coast line.

The North's KCNA news agency said Sunday's test launch verified the homing feature of the warhead that allowed it to survive "under the worst re-entry situation" and accurately detonate.

Defying United Nations resolutions and warnings from the US, the country conducted its latest missile test Sunday.The weapon, said North Korea, was a mid- to long-range ballistic missile that could survive re-entry into the atmosphere, a key feature needed for a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile capable of hitting the United States. And it also lifts scientists in the authoritarian nation who are working to build an arsenal of missiles with nuclear warheads that can reach the US mainland.

"It appears to have not only demonstrated an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) that might enable them to reliably strike the United States base at Guam, but more importantly, may represent a substantial advance to developing an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM)", Schilling wrote on his analysis site 38 North.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is condemning the latest North Korean ballistic missile test as a violation of Security Council resolutions and a threat to peace and security in the region.

North Korea says the medium long-range strategic missile it tested over the weekend can carry a nuclear warhead.

But in comments that appeared aimed at the U.S., he said that "intimidating the DPRK is unacceptable", using an acronym of North Korea.

There's also a political victory for North Korea. President Moon Jae In, a liberal, has suggested he will seek greater engagement with the North. The Kospi of South Korea climbed 0.2 percent to 2,290.65.

The Security Council has approved six increasingly tougher sanctions resolutions following its nuclear and missile tests.

The U.S. ambassador to the U.N., 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.

The statement said Washington maintains its "ironclad commitment" to stand with its allies in the face of the serious threat posed by North Korea.

The launch came as troops from the U.S., Japan and two European nations gather near Guam for drills that are partly a message to North Korea.

North Korea's ambassador to China says that Pyongyang's test-firing of a ballistic missile over the weekend is part of the country's efforts to develop ways to defend itself against hostile aggression overseas. Japan's Kyodo News agency said the missile may be capable of covering a range as far as 4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) if launched at a normal trajectory, citing unidentified sources. Trump has also said he'd be "honored" to talk with leader Kim Jong Un under favorable conditions.

Vanessa Coleman

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