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Korea Tests Rocket Engine, Possibly For ICBM

25 June 2017

The indigenous missile known as Hyunmoo-2 has an estimated range of 800 meters that covers all of the North, and will be deployed following two more tests.

"If South Korea truly wants to improve the Korean ties and seek peace, it should stop picking on our nuclear deterrent force and stand against the U.S.'s plot for first nuclear strike on the North", it said.

Moon has been clear in his desire for dialogue while insisting on the reclusive state's denuclearization.

Friday's missile test is the fourth of six evaluations that will take place "before official weaponization" of the Hyunmoo-2, according to The Korea Herald.

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It's a twist on the typical pattern on the Korean Peninsula, where North Korean state media frequently issue reports about leader Kim Jong Un observing missile tests that it says are needed to combat South Korean and US hostility. "An engagement policy is also only possible only when we have military strength that overwhelms North Korea's", said Moon.

The North has been stepping up its missile development in recent years.

The disclosure of the North's engine test came a day after the United States pressed China to exert more economic and diplomatic pressure on North Korea to help rein in its nuclear and missile programs during a round of high-level talks in Washington.

A midrange ballistic missile was launched from a test site in Hawaii, but an interceptor missile launched from USS John Paul Jones missed the target, the agency said.

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North Korea conducted three rocket engine tests in March.

Due to the secretive nature of all of North Korea's military activity, it is hard for experts to assess how close the country is to building a reliable ICBM.

Any military solution to the North Korea crisis would be "tragic on an unbelievable scale", Trump's defense secretary, Jim Mattis, said last month. All four tests including the one on Friday were successful.

But a test on June 21 of a new capability being developed by the United States and Japan to defend against shorter-range missiles failed to hit its target, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency said on Thursday.

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Korea Tests Rocket Engine, Possibly For ICBM