World War 3: North Korea Now a Direct Threat
North Korea fired an intermediate-range ballistic missile from its capital Pyongyang, resuming provocations despite warnings from South Korea, the U.S. and the international community. The missile flew over Japan before landing in the North Pacific Ocean; it is unusual for North Korea to fire a missile past Japan.
The top envoys on North Korea’s nuclear program from South Korea, the United States and Japan agreed on Tuesday to jointly take punitive action on the North over its ballistic missile launch earlier in the day in their emergency phone conversations, the foreign ministry here said.
North Korea’s firing of a ballistic missile over Japan on Tuesday is apparently aimed at showing that it’s not bluffing with its recent threat to strike waters near Guam, experts here said.
They believe the North’s focus this time was likely testing the atmospheric re-entry technology of its mid-range ballistic missiles for possible combat use.
The North launched what appears to be an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) from Pyongyang early Tuesday morning. It flew more than 2,700 kilometers at a maximum altitude of around 550 km. It was the country’s first-known ballistic missile launched from its capital.
Noteworthy is that the missile was fired on the standard trajectory of 30-45 degrees in contrast to the communist nation’s practice of test-launching mid-range ballistic missiles at a lofted angle to avoid flying over Japan.
Trump held a 40-minute phone call with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe following the missile launch.
Trump and Abe agreed in the phone call that “North Korea poses a grave and growing direct threat to the United States, Japan, and the Republic of Korea, as well as to countries around the world,” according to the statement.
It added that the US and Japanese leaders are “committed to increasing pressure on North Korea, and doing their utmost to convince the international community to do the same.”
Trump says “all options are on the table for North Korea,” according to a White House statement. It comes after Pyongyang launched a missile over Japan.
“The world has received North Korea’s latest message loud and clear: this regime has signaled its contempt for its neighbors, for all members of the United Nations, and for minimum standards of acceptable international behavior,” Trump said in the statement, referring to the Tuesday launch of a ballistic missile which passed over Japan.
“Threatening and destabilizing actions only increase the North Korean regime’s isolation in the region and among all nations of the world. All options are on the table,” Trump added.
The comments come just hours after Trump held a 40-minute phone call with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe following a missile was launched over Japan.