North Korea Tests Banned Intercontinental Missile, South Korea Fires Back

It’s as if the Russia-Ukraine war wasn’t enough to induce a global conflict. North Korea has been upping its missile testing, most recently firing off a banned intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), potentially bringing East Asia to the brink of another war.

The military move, said to be Pyongyang’s biggest missile test ever, encroached Japan’s exclusive economic zone, landing 170 kilometres off the west of Aomori prefecture. Japanese authorities said the latest missile seemed to be more powerful than the last ICBM fired by North Korea in 2017, reaching an altitude of more than 6,000 kilometres.

infographic north korea ballistic missile range

Why is altitude important? It determines a projection of the missile’s estimated range. ICBM Hwasong-14 and Hwasong-15 fired in 2017 reached 3,000 kilometres and 4,500 kilometres in altitude, respectively. Potential ranges for the two missiles were estimated at nearly 10,000 kilometres and 13,000 kilometres.

South Korean deputy national security adviser Suh Choo-suk called the move “a clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions,” which pertain to a moratorium on ICBM launches. The southern neighbor conducted a live-fire test of five multiple ballistic and tactical missiles to demonstrate “retaliatory” and “precision strike” capabilities, according to its military.

Outgoing South Korean President Moon Jae-in said this was a “breach of the suspension of intercontinental ballistic missile launches.” The White House also condemned North Korea’s action, calling the move a “brazen violation” of the UNSC resolutions, as well.

“This action demonstrates that the DPRK continues to prioritise its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs over the well-being of its people,” said White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki in a statement.

The latest missile testing is Pyongyang’s 11th launch in 2022 and the largest scale so far, officially breaking the self-imposed moratorium on ICBM since the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and then-US President Donald Trump.

Information for this briefing was found via BBC and Sky Post. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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