North Korea tests its most powerful missile yet

Nov 30, 2017

FOLLOWING a brief hiatus in its testing programme, North Korea launched a missile in the small hours of November 29th that, unlike any previous missile, appeared to be able to strike any city in America. It was the third test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) since July, and the 20th missile test this year. After watching the launch, the country’s leader, Kim Jong Un, who had spent the previous day visiting a catfish farm, announced: “We have finally realised the great historic cause of completing the state nuclear force, the cause of building a rocket power.”

Mr Kim eschewed the extravagantly bellicose rhetoric he normally indulges in after a successful missile launch. His “solemn declaration” emphasised that North Korea would be a “responsible nuclear power” that “would not pose any threat to any country and region” as long as the interests of North Korea “are not infringed upon”. It sounded like a plea for North Korea to be respected as a nuclear state, not vilified as a pariah.

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