Tillerson: US open to talks with N. Korea despite missile launch
29 August, 2017, 00:45 | Author: Delbert Rhodes
North Korea fired several "unidentified projectiles" into its east waters on Saturday, local media cited South Korean military as saying.
The missile was launched from a site in the North Korean province of Gangwon and flew for about 250km (150 miles), officials in the South said. David Benham, a spokesman for U.S. Pacific Command, said the missile launches occurred "between 11:49 a.m. and 12:19 p.m. Hawaii time August 25".
Later on Saturday, the South Korean Presidential Blue House said the North may have fired an upgraded 300-mm caliber multiple rocket launcher but the military was still analyzing the precise details of the projectiles.
The launches coincide with joint exercises between the USA and South Korean militaries, exercises that North Korea always strongly protests because it considers them preparation for an invasion. North Koreas large-sized artillery rockets blur the boundaries between artillery systems and ballistic missiles because they create their own thrust and are guided during delivery, Kim said.
The U.S. military's Pacific Command said it had detected three short-range ballistic missiles, fired over a 20 minute period. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson earlier this week credited the North with showing restraint by not launching a missile since the late July ICBM test.
The rival Koreas recently saw their always testy relationship get worse after Trump traded warlike threats.
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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.
Pyongyang then threatened to fire a salvo of missiles towards the U.S. territory of Guam, but later backed away from the plan and tensions had eased. "We view it as provocative against the United States and its allies".
The U.S. State Department did not immediately comment about the Saturday missile launches. "The second missile launch at 12:07pm appears to have blown up nearly immediately", Pacific Command said, using times at its Hawaii-based headquarters.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Thursday that he is ready to make concerted efforts with his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in to address the differences between the two countries.
Japan's military said the projectiles did not appear to be objects that could threaten Japan's safety.
Kim reportedly told his troops that they should think of mercilessly wiping out the enemy with arms only and occupying Seoul at one go and the southern half of Korea..
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