United States says NKorea fired three 'short-range' ballistic missiles
29 August, 2017, 00:43 | Author: Devin Moran
North Korea fired several "unidentified projectiles" into its east waters on Saturday, local media cited South Korean military as saying.
"As long as the USA hostile policy and nuclear threat remains unchallenged, (NorthKorea) will never place its self-defensive nuclear deterrence on the negotiating table or step back an inch from the path it took to bolster the national nuclear force", Mr Ju said.
South Korean and American forces are conducting their joint annual drills, called Ulchi Freedom Guardian (UFG), which Pyongyang deemed as a provocation.
"We hope that this is the beginning of this signal that we've been looking for - that they are ready to restrain their level of tensions, they're ready to restrain their provocative acts and that perhaps we are seeing our pathway to sometime in the near future having some dialogue", Tillerson said.
All three appeared to be short-range missiles, rather than the long-range types created to be able to strike the United States, and were launched from Kittaeryong on North Korea's east coast.
Since firing an intercontinental ballistic weapon last month, Pyongyang has threatened to aim missiles at the US Pacific territory of Guam. We are working with our Interagency partners on a more detailed assessment and we will provide a public update if warranted.
South Korea and the United States agreed to deploy the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense anti-missile system in response to the growing missile threat from North Korea.
The U.S. State Department did not immediately comment about the Saturday missile launches. "We view it as provocative against the United States and its allies".
Kim Dong-yub, a former South Korean military official who is now an analyst at Seouls Institute for Far Eastern Studies, said that South Korean assessment doesnt necessarily contradict the USA evaluation that the launches involved ballistic missiles.
"They could be ballistic missiles but they could be rockets".
On April 2009, Pyongyang launched a long-range rocket, which flew over Japan in what it said was an attempt to put a satellite into orbit, but which was seen by the US, Japan and South Korea as a disguised test of a Taepodong-2.
This is the latest development in escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States, which have been simmering for months.
Earlier this month, President Donald Trump issued an extraordinary ultimatum to North Korea, warning Pyongyang not to make any more threats against the United States or it will "face fire and fury like the world has never seen".
In a conciliatory move before that, Tillerson said the U.S. was willing to sit down for talks with North Korea, but only if it relinquishes its pursuit of nuclear weapons.
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