North Korea Fires 2nd Missile In Under A Week Just Ahead Of Friday UN Security Council Meeting
Just ahead of a United Nations Security Council special meeting which is expected to take up the issue of the recent uptick in weapons tests by nuclear armed North Korea, scheduled for later in the day Friday, the north has once again conducted a major test, this time of a new anti-aircraft missile.
The official Korean Central News Agency described the anti-aircraft missile as displaying “remarkable combat performance” via its twin rudder controls among other new technologies. It comes after earlier in the week the north said it tested for the first time an experimental hypersonic glide vehicle. Thus Friday’s event marks the country’s second known weapons test in a week.
There were a series of provocative missile tests in September, including a cruise missile test in mid-September, after months of relative quiet out of Pyongyang. The newest surface-to-air antiaircraft missile test was confirmed in photographs produced by state media, but not immediately verified by South Korean intelligence monitors.
According to The Wall Street Journal:
Kim Jong Un wasn’t reported to have attended the Thursday launch, North Korea’s fourth weapons test in recent weeks. But a day earlier, Mr. Kim, in a policy speech to his rubber-stamp legislature, had praised the country’s weapons scientists for developing “ultramodern weapons” at “an extremely fast speed.”
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken this week condemned the new flurry of weapons tests, saying they created “greater prospects for instability and insecurity“. The Friday UN Security Council meeting on the issue, called by the US, UK and France – was scheduled initially for Thursday, but pushed back to Friday.
Russia and China were reportedly behind the delay, as they requested more time to examine the situation. Now it seems Pyongyang has given more to consider with this newest test.
Two weeks ago, North Korea test-fired a “new type long-range” cruise missile that would give the country a “strategic significance of possessing another effective deterrence means for more reliably guaranteeing the security of our state and strongly containing the military maneuvers of the hostile forces,” North Korea’s state-owned media KCNA said.
During the Friday UNSC meeting, the US is expected to push to body to censure the “repeated violations” of UN Security Council resolutions, which is how Blinken has lately described the new tests.