US ‘strongly condemns’ North Korea’s intercontinental ballistic missile launch

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The United States said Saturday it “strongly condemns” North Korea’s launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile, which Japan said landed in its exclusive economic zone earlier in the day.

“This launch needlessly raises tensions and risks destabilizing the security situation in the region,” the White House said in a statement, adding, “the United States will take all necessary measures to ensure the security of the American homeland and Republic of Korea and Japanese allies.”


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Pyongyang “fired one ICBM-class ballistic missile toward the east. It flew for about 66 minutes,” Japan’s chief government spokesman Hirokazu Matsuno told reporters earlier in the day.

He said the missile flew an estimated 900 kilometers (560 miles), reaching a maximum altitude of 5,700 kilometers, and is believed to have landed at 6:27 pm (0927 GMT).

Matsuno responded “yes,” when asked if the missile may have had a lofted trajectory, and said that whether it used solid fuel would be analyzed.

“This series of actions by North Korea threatens the peace and stability of Japan and the international community, and is absolutely unforgivable,” Matsuno added.

He said Japan had lodged a protest through “diplomatic channels.”

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