North Korea launched a mid-range ballistic missile on Wednesday but the test ended in failure, U.S. and South Korea militaries said..
Pyongyang tested multiple missiles in March, launching four projectiles while a fifth rocket was unsuccessful.
The rocket was launched from Wonsan, Kangwon province, and is likely to have been tested as a message of warning to the United States and South Korea, Yonhap reported.
“This morning North Korea fired a missile from the airport in Wonsan, but we surmise it was a failure,” Seoul’s defense ministry said. “South Korea and the [United States] are aware of the missile launch and to their knowledge North Korea’s missile was not successfully launched.”
The U.S. Pacific Command reported the missile exploded “within seconds,” but did not release data on the type of missile used in the test, CNN reported.
A South Korea military source who spoke to Yonhap on the condition of anonymity said it is possible the mid-range rocket was either a Pukguksong-2 or a new kind of missile.
The failed test may not be the last of North Korea missile provocations.
In April and May 2016, North Korea launched a series of test missiles until it succeeded in launching an intermediate-range Musudan missile in June.
In Beijing, China’s foreign ministry blamed the joint U.S.-South Korea military drills for the “current situation on the peninsula.”
“‘Everyone with his dagger drawn’ would be a fair description,” the foreign ministry said.