North Korea said Tuesday it has successfully test-fired a ballistic missile using what it called a precision control guidance system, hitting a planned target with an accuracy of 7 meters.
A day after North Korea test-fired a ballistic missile that flew some 400 kilometers before apparently falling into waters within Japan’s exclusive economic zone, the country’s official media said leader Kim Jong Un had ordered the development of more powerful strategic weapons based on the present success.
Kim, who supervised and observed the test, praised the accuracy of the missile as if it were “a crack shot hits a target with sniper’s rifle” and it would “dig up eyes of the enemies,” according to the Korean Central News Agency, which did not report when the launch was carried out.
North Korea also said through KCNA that the test was to verify features of a new caterpillar-type, self-propelled launching pad vehicle and automated launching preparation processes in different terrain conditions, as well as the flying stability of the missile and the guidance correctness at the time of atmospheric re-entry.
Kim expressed satisfaction that the automated processes drastically reduced the launching time to help the North Korean military to quickly contain its enemies, according to KCNA.
Despite repeated international warnings, Monday’s missile test was North Korea’s third in a little over three weeks. It followed what North Korea claimed were two “successful” tests of medium-to-long-range missiles.
While the United States and its allies in the region are seeking to step up pressure on North Korea, Kim’s regime has shown no signs of halting its nuclear and missile programs.
Apparently determined to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting as far away as the U.S. mainland, North Korea has been accelerating the pace of weapons tests.
The latest missile launch was the ninth in 2017, although North Korea is banned from testing nuclear weapons or missile technology and is already subject to multiple international sanctions.
“Whenever news of our valuable victory is broadcast recently, the Yankees would be very much worried about it and the gangsters of the south Korean puppet army would be dispirited more and more,” Kim was quoted as saying.
“He expressed the conviction that it would make greater leap forward in this spirit to send bigger ‘gift package’ to the Yankees,” KCNA said.
North Korea did not this time specify the type of the ballistic missile it test-fired, but indicated that it was a modified version of one belonging to its projectile group Hwasong, or Mars.
North Korea’s most influential Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Tuesday printed photographs of the launch and the missile resembled a Scud variant that was displayed during a military parade in Pyongyang on April 15.
South Korea’s military said Monday that it is believed to be either a Scud short-range missile or a Scud-ER intermediate range missile capable of striking western Japan.