North Korea has been shooting down the suspected ICBM since 2017

The suspected ICBM flew at an altitude of 6,000 kilometers (3,728 miles) and an altitude of 1,080 kilometers (671 miles) 71 minutes before landing in waters off Japan’s west coast on Thursday, the Japanese Defense Ministry said.

Japan’s Deputy Defense Minister Makoto Oniki told reporters on Thursday that the height would suggest it was a “new type of ICBM”. The missile landed in Japan’s exclusive economic zone 170 kilometers (106 miles) west of Cape Top on the northern tip of Japan’s main island of Honshu, Oniki said.

Thursday’s launch is North Korea’s 11th year One on March 16th Its long-range test since November 2017, when it sent the Hwasung-15 missile to an altitude of 4,475 kilometers (2,800 miles) with a flight time of 950 kilometers (590 miles) and 53, is thought to have failed. Minutes.

The United States has joined forces with allies South Korea and Japan in strongly condemning Thursday’s launch. In a statement, the White House said the move “unnecessarily raises tensions and risks destabilizing the security situation in the region.”

US President Joe Biden is currently in Belgium, where he is attending the G7 summit with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. The meeting is part of a series of meetings, including an extraordinary NATO summit, as Western leaders seek to align their responses to Russia’s brutal occupation of Ukraine. The European Council meeting will also take place on Thursday.

According to analysts, North Korea’s recent missile tests are trying to show the world that Pyongyang is a warrior in the struggle for power and influence.

“North Korea refuses to ignore it and seeks to use its global aggression in the war in Ukraine to force it to pursue its status as a nuclear-armed state,” said Leaf-Eric Easley, associate professor of international research at Ewha Womans. The university in Seoul told CNN.

“North Korea has not launched an aggression anywhere on the scale of Russia’s aggression on Ukraine, but Pyongyang’s ambitions are violating the defense as it seeks to undermine post – war security order in Asia,” Easley added.

Thursday’s test comes two weeks after South Korea New Conservative President elected, Yoon Chuck Yeol, Outgoing President Moon Jae-in is expected to take a tougher line against North Korea.

Provocative act

Analysts say Thursday’s test may be the longest-range missile ever launched by North Korea.

“North Korea appears to have conducted a ‘concealed’ missile test, a tactic they have often used to test long-range systems without provoking a country to fly too far,” said Joseph Dempsey, a research partner for defense and military analysis at the International Organization. For strategic studies in London.

Preliminary data from Thursday’s test show that it could be the Hwasong-17, a much larger ICBM than the Hwasong-15 tested in 2017, he said.

Kim Dong-Yup, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul, said the data showed that the Jupiter missile had a maximum range of about 15,000 kilometers (9,320 miles) – which theoretically puts it within reach of the U.S. continent. The warship it carries – about 3,000 kilometers (1,864 miles) more than the Hwasong-15.

Kim said that despite the potential extended limit, Pyongyang has not yet demonstrated the technology needed to successfully re-enter the final phase of the aircraft in the Earth’s atmosphere.

The American answer

Pyongyang’s most recent releases, on February 26 and March 4, may be targeted Test the new ICBM systemThe U.S. Department of Defense said earlier this month.

Earlier this month, the US Indo-Pacific Command announced that it was intensifying “intelligence, preparedness and surveillance operations” on North Korea in the wake of the latest missile launches.

The move by the Biden administration is a signal that the United States and its allies in the region, such as South Korea and Japan, need to strengthen its military position against North Korea’s missile tests.

The command said they had ordered “intensification of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations in the Yellow Sea, as well as enhanced readiness among our ballistic missile defense forces in the region.”

Last week, the U.S. military conducted exercises to demonstrate its readiness, including simulating ballistic missile defense systems, following North Korean operations on and around the Korean Peninsula.

The U.S. military’s 35th air defense artillery has moved into the distance, “occupying its wartime defenses, establishing the Patriot missile system and operating air and missile defense operations in simulated combat conditions,” Korea said in a statement.

At sea, F-35 and F / A-18 fighter jets fly aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier, along with U.S. Air Force assets in the area, exposing troops in the Yellow Sea off the west coast of South Korea. , According to the 7th Fleet of the U.S. Navy in Japan.

This story was updated to clarify the location of the missile.

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