North Korea says recent rocket drill was "routine and self-defensive" - KCNA

Alexei Nikolsky  Russian Presidential Press and Information Office  TASS

Alexei Nikolsky Russian Presidential Press and Information Office TASS

The weapons North Korea launched over the weekend travelled into the stratosphere and flew at a distance long enough to strike deep into South Korean territory, according to a South Korean assessment.

That means the weapons could strike a region stretching from the Seoul area - accounting for about half of the country's population - to the central city of Daejeon.

Saturday's drill was the first test of a ballistic missile by North Korea since it launched a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile in November 2017.

"Anything in this very interesting world is possible, but I believe that Kim Jong Un fully realizes the great economic potential of North Korea, & will do nothing to interfere or end it".

Asked by reporters in April whether he was prepared to ease some sanctions on North Korea, Trump said he and Moon were discussing "certain humanitarian things" and the possibility of South Korea helping North Korea with food. Kim may hope that the new weapons test will jolt the South into further talks over economic cooperation.

The second statement also criticised last week's test of a US Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) by the US Air Force out of California over the Pacific, saying South Korea was in no position to criticise North Korea. A U.S. State Department spokesperson said recently that it does not want to block justified humanitarian aid to the North, but added that the communist state is responsible for the food shortage.

The percentage of respondents who negatively evaluated the president's North Korea policy was 44.7 percent, including 29.1 percent who said the policy was very wrong.

Russia's Iskander possesses one more key capability - it can carry both conventional and nuclear weapons.

"It's doable that their bomb may match into associate Iskander-type missile", he says. "Do they need to deploy these weapons with nuclear weapons or not?"

North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency published a statement by an unnamed military spokesman who called South Korea's criticism a "cock-and-bull story", hours before senior defense officials from South Korea, United States and Japan met in Seoul to discuss the North Korean launches and other security issues.