North Korea claims to have conducted its first successful test of a long-range missile that it says can “reach anywhere in the world.”
Tuesday morning’s missile test reached a height of 2,802 kilometers (1,741 miles), according to state broadcaster Korea Central Television, which would be the highest altitude a North Korean missile had ever reached.
The country claimed it was an intercontinental ballistic missile, or ICBM, which would put the United States on notice that Pyongyang could potentially hit the US mainland. South Korea said this latest missile had an “improved range” compared with its May launch.
North Korea appears to have timed the launch for maximum political effect, giving the order to fire on the eve of the July Fourth holiday, just days after President Donald Trump spoke with Japanese and Chinese leaders about the North Korean threat and before this week’s G20 meeting.
The launch was North Korea’s 11th missile test this year and comes amid increasing frustration from Trump about the lack of progress in curbing Pyongyang’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.