North Korea says test involved a new type of submarine-launched ballistic missile

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North Korea claims to have successfully tested a “new type” of submarine-launched ballistic missile, as the nuclear-armed nation seeks to strengthen its arsenal. According to the official Korean Central News Agency, the weapon had “a lot of advanced control guiding technologies” and was launched from the same vessel that the North utilised in its maiden submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) testing five years ago. The last issue casts doubt on Pyongyang’s claim to have fired a submarine-based missile in 2015.

The absence of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un from the report on Wednesday suggests he was not present.

The black-and-white missile emerged from the water, trailed by a column of fire and smoke and a surfacing submarine, according to images published in the Rodong Sinmun newspaper. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un watches a ballistic missile launch.According to South Korea, North Korea launched a ballistic missile into the sea. Diplomats said the UN Security Council would hold an emergency closed-door meeting on North Korea on Wednesday, reflecting international concern.

¬†Analysts believe the images show one of the missiles displayed by Pyongyang at a defence exhibition last week. According to Anki, it was “a bit of a stretch to launch a new, previously untested missile from a submarine for the first test.” A proven submarine-based missile capability would raise the North’s arsenal to new heights, permitting deployment far beyond the Korean peninsula and providing a second-strike capability in the case of a military base attack.

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