ICBM Current Affairs

US calls for new U.N. sanctions against N.Korea 

The United States has decided to present a draft resolution in the U.N. Security Council aimed at imposing new sanctions on North Korea as it has successfully launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Salient Highlights

An emergency meeting of the UNSC was called by the United States, Japan and South Korea to agree on a response to the North Korea’s ICBM test. In the emergency meeting, the US has said that the launch of an ICBM by the North Korea is a clear and sharp escalation. Under the new sanctions, the US has decided to use trade restrictions targeting those countries that continue to have dealings with North Korea. France has expressed its support for a new resolution.

In last year, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) had adopted two sanctions resolutions to curtail hard currency needed to fund North Korea’s military programs. Those resolutions paved the way for imposing bans on North Korea’s coal exports, which is its major source of revenue. In addition, the sanctions also placed restrictions on banking and provided for mandatory searches of all cargo to and from North Korea.

In total, so far six sets of sanctions have been imposed on North Korea since it has first tested an atomic device in 2006.

Background

Recently, North Korea had successfully test-fired its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) Hwasong-14 into waters near Sea of Japan. The claim was confirmed by the United States. The launch appeared to be North Korea’s most successful missile test since its ballistic missile programme gathered pace in the late 1990s. Based on missile’s height and trajectory path, US scientists claim that missile could potentially be powerful enough to reach Alaska.  The missile had reached an altitude higher and flew longer than any of the North Korea’s previous similar tests. The missile had landed in Japan’s exclusive economic zone. US has strongly condemned the launch and added that it will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea. The ICBM testing represents a new escalation of the threat to US and its allies and partners.

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North Korea claims successful test of its first intercontinental missile  

North Korea has claimed that it has successfully test-fired its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) Hwasong-14 into waters near Sea of Japan. The claim was confirmed by United States.

The launch appeared to be North Korea’s most successful missile test since its ballistic missile programme gathered pace in the late 1990s. The successful test also marks North Korea’s the final step in becoming confident and powerful nuclear state that can strike anywhere on Earth.

Key Facts

Based on missile’s height and trajectory path, US scientists claim that missile could potentially be powerful enough to reach Alaska.  The missile had reached an altitude higher and flew longer than any of the North Korea’s previous similar tests. The missile had landed in Japan’s exclusive economic zone.

US has strongly condemned the launch and added that it will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea. The ICBM testing represents a new escalation of the threat to US and its allies and partners, the region and the world.

What is Intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM)?

An ICBM is a missile launched by a land-based system that is intended to carry nuclear payloads. To qualify as an ICBM, a missile must have a minimum range of 5,500km. The most significant difference between an ICBM and other ballistic missiles is its greater range and speed. It enables countries to strike exceptionally distant targets with minimum warning.

What are experts saying about the North Korean claim?

Analysis by South Korea and Japan has supported the account given by North Korea, which said the missile reached an altitude of 2,802km and flew 930km. The US initially had described it as an intermediate-range missile but later conceded it was an ICBM. North Korea will be 8th nation in the world to successfully test ICBM. Other countries that have ICBM technology are US, Russia, China, UK, France, Israel and India.

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