North Korea: ballistic missile launched over Japan – as it happened

North Korea 0 Comment 2

5.40am BST

If North Korea continues to walk this road, there will be no bright future. We need to get North Korea to understand that.

Related: Tillerson says Russia and China must take ‘direct action’ over North Korea missile launch

5.12am BST

David Wright of the Union of Concerned Scientists said: “Like the August 28 test, this test appears to have been a Hwasong-12 missile launched from a site near the Pyongyang airport.

“The missile followed a standard trajectory – rather than the highly lofted trajectories North Korea used earlier this year – and it flew over part of the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido.”

4.49am BST

This graphic shows the path taken by the missile from just north of Pyongyang to the Pacific Ocean, over Japan:

4.28am BST

Australia’s foreign minister, Julie Bishop, says North Korea is gaining greater capability with each missile launch:

I understand it was an intermediate-range missile test but we are informed that it did fly further than previous tests.

The regime has carried out over 80, nearly 90, illegal ballistic missile tests and it seems that on each occasion it gains greater capability.

4.17am BST

North Korea has been ramping up its provocations in recent months – and today’s missile launch was the longest flight it has managed.

In July, Pyongyang tested its first intercontinental ballistic missiles (this latest launch is thought to be an intermediate-range ballistic missile).

4.02am BST

Wang Zhen in our Beijing bureau has been talking to Cheng Xiaohe, a North Korea expert from Renmin University.

Cheng said Beijing would feel frustrated and embarrassed by Friday’s launch and Kim Jong-un’s endless missile launches: “China is also worried since it can’t keep control of North Korea’s tests.”

3.47am BST

South Korea fired two ballistic missiles in a show of strength against the North – but one failed.

Yonhap news agency reports that the South Korean military reacted while Pyongyang’s missile was still in the air, firing two Hyunmoo-2 missiles close to the South-North border.

3.32am BST

The United States secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, has called on China and Russia to take “direct actions of their own” against North Korea. But while Beijing has yet to officially respond Chinese experts believe significant new steps are out of the question.

“I don’t expect China to make any radical [moves],” says Zhao Tong, a North Korea expert at Beijing’s Carnegie–Tsinghua centre for global policy.

3.11am BST

The South Korean national security council has held an emergency meeting at which president Moon Jae-in ordered officials to prepare for the possibility of biological attacks from the North.

Moon said Seoul wanted “stern” diplomatic and military pressures to be applied, including a live-fire drill of the Hyunmoo-2 ballistic missile in a show of force against Pyongyang.

2.56am BST

The US secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, has condemned the missile launch, saying China and Russia must do more to put pressure on Kim Jong-un:

North Korea’s provocative missile launch represents the second time the people of Japan, a treaty ally of the United States, have been directly threatened in recent weeks.

These continued provocations only deepen North Korea’s diplomatic and economic isolation.

2.50am BST

The top commander of US nuclear forces says his assumption is that North Korea’s most recent nuclear test, on 3 September, was a hydrogen bomb, Associated Press reports:

Air Force General John E Hyten, commander of Strategic Command, told reporters that he assumes from the size of the underground explosion and other factors that it was a hydrogen bomb – which is a leap beyond the fission, or atomic, bombs North Korea has previously tested.

Shortly after the 3 September test, North Korea claimed it had exploded a hydrogen bomb, and while US officials have not contradicted this, they have not confirmed it, either. Administration officials had indicated they saw nothing to contradict the North’s claim. Hyten went further, saying the characteristics of the test made him think it was an H-bomb:

When I look at a thing that size, I as a military officer assume that it’s a hydrogen bomb. I have to. I have to make that assumption. What I saw equates to a hydrogen bomb. I saw the event. I saw the indications that came from that event. I saw the size, I saw the reports, and therefore to me I’m assuming it was a hydrogen bomb.”

Pressed further, Hyten said he was not confirming that North Korea’s was a hydrogen bomb.

“I’m just saying the size of the weapon shows that there was clearly a secondary explosion,” he said. Unlike a fission, or atomic, bomb, a hydrogen bomb is built with two “stages”, or explosive devices that work in tandem to create fusion.

2.26am BST

6.57am Japanese local time (21.57 GMT): Missile launched from around Sunan, just north of Pyongyang, eastwards across the Sea of Japan.

7.07am Japanese local time (22.07 GMT): Missile passes over Cape Erimo, southern Hokkaidō, the northernmost of Japan’s main islands.

2.16am BST

People living in regions near the missile flight path in Hokkaido received two text alerts on Friday morning.

The first, at 7am local time (10pm Thursday GMT), read:

Missile launched. Missile launched. It seems that the missile has been launched from North Korea. Please evacuate to a building with strong structure or go to the basement.

Missile passed. Missile passed. It seems that the missile has passed Hokkaido area and landed in the Pacific Ocean. If you find anything suspicious, please don’t go close to it. Report it to the police and firefighters.

2.04am BST

The missile test comes just days after the United Nations security council approved tougher sanctions against North Korea.

The vote for the sanctions, the ninth package of measures imposed by the UN security council on Pyongyang since 2006 for its nuclear and missile tests, came as a relief to US diplomats who had feared a Chinese abstention, which would have considerably blunted the impact of the new sanctions.

Related: North Korea sanctions: UN security council unanimously agrees new measures

1.57am BST

Here is the Japanese prime minister’s full response to the North Korea missile launch:

The UN resolution showed the international community’s unified strong will for a peaceful solution. But despite that, North Korea has again carried out this outrageous conduct.

It is absolutely unacceptable.

1.48am BST

James Mattis, the US defense secretary, has accused North Korea of “a reckless act”.

Mattis said the missile “was fired over Japan and put millions of Japanese in duck and cover”.

I don’t want to talk on that yet.

1.42am BST

Yonhap news agency reports that Seoul has flexed its muscles in the wake of the North Korea test:

The South’s president Moon Jae-in immediately convened a national security council (NSC) meeting as the country’s troops conducted ballistic missile training in the East Sea [also known as the Sea of Japan] in response to the North’s latest provocation.

The military fired the Hyunmoo-II missile in consideration of the distance between the training site and the Sunan airfield, which is the “origin of provocation,” the joint chiefs of staff said.

1.37am BST

There remains some doubt over the type of missile fired.

US Pacific Command and the South Korean military said they believe it to have been an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) – as was used in the August launch of the Hwasong-12.

1.28am BST

Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, has been speaking about the missile launch:

If North Korea continues to walk this road, there will be no bright future. We need to get North Korea to understand that.

This time, the Japanese government once again, since immediately after the missile launch … had completely assessed the movements of the missile and we have taken all full necessary measures.

1.23am BST

6.57am Japanese local time (21.57GMT): Missile launched from around Sunan, just north of Pyongyang, eastwards across the Sea of Japan.

7.07am Japanese local time (22.07 GMT): Missile passes over Cape Erimo, southern Hokkaidō, the northernmost of Japan’s main islands.

1.17am BST

South Korea’s central bank will also hold an emergency meeting, Yonhap news agency reports, “to review contingency plan to stabilise markets if necessary”.

1.15am BST

The United Nations security council will meet within hours – at 3pm ET (7pm GMT) Friday – to discuss the latest North Korean missile test.

On Monday, the council unanimously agreed to boost sanctions against the country, including a ban on textile exports and a ceiling on imports of crude oil.

1.10am BST

Retired Vice Admiral Yoki Koda, of the Japanese maritime self-defence force, has told broadcaster NHK that the missile is likely to be the new intermediate-range Hwasong-12 – as used by North Korea in August, and the weapon Kim Jong-un threatened to use on Guam:

The flying time and the altitude and the flying distance and the time it flew … it flew just under 20 minutes and it landed in waters 2,000km east of Cape Erimo.

It is believed that the flight distance is about 3,400km … North Korea could have been aiming slightly north and was not aiming for straight in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. So that would reduce the possibility that it was a Hwasong-14.

12.56am BST

The statement from the US military reads:

US Pacific Command detected and tracked what we assess was a single North Korean ballistic missile launch at 11.57am Hawaii time [9.57pm GMT] September 14.

Initial assessment indicates the launch of an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM). The launch occurred in the vicinity of Sunan, North Korea, and flew east.

12.47am BST

This is Claire Phipps picking up our live coverage.

The US military says the launch was a single intermediate-range ballistic missile. It flew over Japan before landing in the Pacific.

12.37am BST

Earlier today when we were aboard Air Force One @POTUS said he was working on something new to secure the homeland from #DPRK threats.

12.36am BST

General Hyten made the point that there was “clearly a secondary explosion” in the nuclear test of 3 September. Hydrogen bombs, as opposed to atomic bombs, work in a two-stage process.

12.32am BST

Just moments before today’s missile launch, a senior US commander said he had to assume the North’s sixth nuclear test 12 days ago was indeed a powerful hydrogen bomb, as claimed by Pyongyang.

Air Force General John E Hyten said his assumption was based on the size of the explosion and other factors. “When I look at a thing that size, I as a military officer assume that it’s a hydrogen bomb,” Hyten said. As head of Strategic Command, he would be in charge of all elements of the US nuclear force in the event of war.

I have to make that assumption. What I saw equates to a hydrogen bomb. I saw the event. I saw the indications that came from that event. I saw the size, I saw the reports, and therefore to me I’m assuming it was a hydrogen bomb.”

12.20am BST

This week North Korea has ratcheted up its rhetoric against Japan, threatening to sink the nation after last month’s launch of a medium-range ballistic missile (which flew over Hokkaido, just as today’s unidentified projectile did)

Pyongyang said: “The four islands of the [Japanese] archipelago should be sunken into the sea by the nuclear bomb of Juche.” Juche is the ideology of self-reliance pioneered by Kim Il-sung, the country’s founder and grandfather of the current leader, Kim Jong-un.

Related: We will sink Japan and turn US to ‘ashes and darkness’, says North Korea

12.16am BST

White House chief of staff John Kelly says Donald Trump has been briefed on the missile launch.

12.14am BST

South Korea’s military believes the missile flew 3,700km and reached an altitude of 770km. This would suggest a shorter, lower trajectory than recent launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles (see a diagram in this report here).

In July the North testfired two ICBMs and this month it carried out its sixth nuclear test, a powerful blast it said was the detonation of thermonuclear device.

12.07am BST

Japanese officials have said the missile was launched at 6.57am Japan time (9.57pm GMT) and flew over Hokkaido before landing in the Pacific nine minutes later 2,000 kilometres east of the northern island’s Cape Erimo.

Chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga said Japan would take appropriate and timely action at the UN and elsewhere, and stay in close contact with the United States and South Korea.

12.00am BST

The Australian prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, believes today’s missile launch is a sign of the regime’s frustration at being hit with further sanctions.

This week the UN security council voted unanimously in favour of a ban on the country’s textile exports and a ceiling on the country’s imports of crude oil. (Full report here.)

11.57pm BST

The North last month used the same Sunan airport to fire a Hwasong-12 intermediate range missile that flew over northern Japan in what it declared as a “meaningful prelude” to containing the US Pacific island territory of Guam and the start of more ballistic missile launches targeting the Pacific ocean.

See here for the report from our Tokyo correspondent Justin McCurry

Related: ‘Missile passing’: Japan wakes to ominous warning about North Korean launch

11.53pm BST

The Japanese government says there was no danger to people or shipping from missile debris. The projectile, which has yet to be identified, appears to have been launched in a similar direction to the one that passed over northern Japan late last month.

11.50pm BST

Japanese broadcast NHK has reported the missile flew into Japanese airspace this morning before landing in the sea about 2000km east of Cape Erimo on Hokkaido in the north.

11.48pm BST

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff have said the missile was launched from Sunan, the site of Pyongyang’s international airport.

11.47pm BST

North Korea has launched an unidentified missile that travelled east towards Japan, South Korea’s military said on Friday.

Both the US and South Korean militaries are working to establish what kind of projectile was launched. It is known that it was fired from near the North’s capital, Pyongyang.

Continue reading…
Source: north-korea
Link : North Korea: ballistic missile launched over Japan – as it happened

Author

Leave a comment

Search

Back to Top