North Korea on Wednesday said it has successfully tested a new type of intercontinental ballistic missile that can reach the whole of the continental United States.
State television claimed that Pyongyang had now achieved its mission of becoming a nuclear state.
State news agency KCNA said that the missile reached an altitude of 4,475 kilometers and flew 950 kilometers for 53 minutes.
It added that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who personally signed off on the launch, declared with pride that now his country have finally realised the great historic cause of completing the state nuclear force, the cause of building a rocket power.
KCNA said that as a responsible nuclear power and a peace-loving state, North Korea would make every possible effort to serve the noble purpose of defending peace and stability of the world.
It also said its weapons, meant as a defence against the US imperialists nuclear blackmail policy and would not pose any threat to any country as long as North Korean interests were not infringed upon.
The intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) , Hwasong-15, was launched early on Wednesday. It landed in Japanese waters but flew higher than any other missile the North has previously tested.
Many countries have strongly condemned the latest missile launch by North Korea. Reacting to the missile launch, US President Donald Trump pledged to “take care” of North Korea. He said at the White House that it is a situation that the US will handle.
Mr. Trump also spoke to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the phone. The White House said Trump and Abe have agreed that Pyongyang’s latest launch will further isolate the country from the international community.
Speaking to media Japanese Prime Minister, Abe said Japan and the United States have agreed to work with the international community to raise the pressure on North Korea to a maximum level.
In a statement South Korea said it strongly condemns North Korea for its continued escalation of tension with this reckless provocation that came in disregard of sincere efforts to relieve tension and build peace on the Korean Peninsula.
The European Union also issued a statement condemning the missile launch, saying it is a further unacceptable violation of North Korea’s obligations. Italy also condemned the missile launch.
Meanwhile, the UN Security Council is expected to meet in New York today to discuss responses to North Korea’s latest ballistic missile test. The emergency meeting has been requested by Japan, the United States and South Korea.