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North Korea conducts another missile test

Latest test comes a week after rogue state launched intermediate-range missile

SEOUL North Korea fired a ballistic missile into waters off its east coast yesterday, South Korea and Japan said.

It comes a week after it tested an intermediate-range missile which experts saw as an advancement in the reclusive state's weapons programme.

The missile was launched from a location near Pukchang, 60km north-east of the capital Pyongyang.

It's the area where North Korea attempted to test launch another missile last month but failed, South Korea's Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement. The missile flew about 500km, it added.

Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the missile landed outside Japan's exclusive economic zone and no damage to ships or airplanes was reported.

An official travelling with US President Donald Trump in Saudi Arabia said the White House was aware of the launch and noted that the missile had a shorter range than the three previously tested by North Korea.

China had no immediate comment while both South Korea and Japan called emergency meetings of top officials.

"The flight range was 500km and South Korea and the United States are closely analysing additional information," South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

It was the second missile test by North Korea since South Korean President Moon Jae In took office 11 days ago. Last Sunday, the North test-fired an intermediate range missile that flew further and higher than those previously tested.

Mr Moon won this month's election on a platform of a moderate approach to North Korea and has said he would be willing to go to Pyongyang under the right circumstances, arguing dialogue must be used in parallel with sanctions.

North Korea has defied all calls to rein in its nuclear and missile programs, even from China, its lone major ally.

- REUTERS

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