North Korea launched a sea-to-surface ballistic missile

North Korea launched a sea-to-surface ballistic missile (MSBS) on Saturday, May 7, the South Korean military said, just hours after the United States warned that Pyongyang may resume nuclear tests.

“Our soldiers spotted it around 2:07 in the afternoon. [7 h 07, heure de Paris] A short-range ballistic missile, presumably MSBS, was launched [la ville portuaire de] Sinbo »Eastern North Korea, the South Korean Army’s General Staff said in a statement.

This shot is Pyongyang’s 15th power show since the beginning of the year. Despite severe international sanctions over its weapons program, North Korea has stepped up its testing and rejected any calls for dialogue from the United States. In particular, it launched an ICBM at the end of March. as much ” excitement “ Washington denounces it.

Since 2017, Kim Jong-un’s regime has stopped intercontinental ballistic missile launches and nuclear tests.

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The American initiative remained a dead letter

Last week, in a major military parade, the North Korean leader vowed to develop his nuclear power ” as soon as possible “ Warn of potential strikes “preventive”mentioned by the future South Korean President, Governor Yoon Seok Yeol.

Thus, the United States believes that North Korea can lead ” This month “ On Friday, the US State Department said its first nuclear test since 2017 (seventh overall). “This analysis is consistent with recent public statements by North Korea itself.”US diplomatic spokeswoman Galina Porter said, stressing that the US government shares it with its allies and goes Continue to coordinate closely with them..

Satellite images recently showed signs of new nuclear activity in a tunnel at the Punggye-ri site. According to North Korea, this site was demolished in 2018 ahead of a historic summit between Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump, which marked the beginning of a phase of dialogue that took off long ago.

The current President of the United States, Joe Biden, has said he is ready to renew dialogue to discuss the denuclearization of the reclusive country, but the initiative has remained a dead letter since his arrival at the White House in early 2021. He is scheduled to visit Japan and South Korea later this month. , where concerns about Pyongyang will be on the agenda.

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This new shooting comes before the new South Korean president takes office on Tuesday, in favor of a balance of power with North Korea. Rather than accepting calls for dialogue, the Kim regime appears to be preparing to test a tactical nuclear warhead.says Leif Eric Easley, a professor at the University of Iowa in Seoul.

Second launch in a week, according to Seoul

“The seventh nuclear test will be the first since September 2017 and will inflame tensions on the Korean peninsula, increasing the risks of miscalculation and miscommunication between the Kim regime and the Yun administration in the future.”Mr. Easley added. South Korea has more conventional weapons capabilities than its northern neighbor, and Mr. Yoon called for more US military assets to be deployed.

In 2021, South Korea tested its sea-to-land ballistic missile, becoming one of the few countries to master this technology. It also revealed a supersonic cruise missile, in reference to an arms race on the peninsula. On Wednesday, Pyongyang launched what Seoul and Tokyo described as a ballistic missile, but North Korea’s state media, which usually reports on weapons tests, did not.

Today’s launch [samedi] Similar to the Wednesday ballistic missile, said Hong Min, a researcher at the Korea Institute for National Unity. North Korea appears to be conducting a series of tests to achieve its strategic goals. »

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Negotiations to persuade Kim Jong Un to give up nuclear weapons came to nothing. For five years, South Korean President Moon Jae-in has pursued a policy of dialogue with Pyongyang, but according to his successor, this approach “servile” It was a clear failure. According to analysts, the North Korean leader may want to show, through this series of tests, that he is not open to dialogue with the new government.

The world with AFP

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