22:27 GMT08 March 2021
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    The government of Japan considers that North Korea’s latest missile, launched on Tuesday, was likely of the intercontinental ballistic type, country’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Wednesday.

    TOKYO (Sputnik) — North Korea announced on Tuesday that it had successfully launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile, the Hwasong-14, at 00:30 GMT. It said the missile traveled 580 miles and reached an altitude of 1,740 miles during its 39-minute flight before "accurately hitting the target waters" in the Sea of Japan.

    "Currently the government analyzes all of the details, but based on a comprehensive study of the information received by this hour, we consider that there is a high possibility that the ballistic missile launched this time was an intercontinental one," Suga said at the press conference.

    According to the official, the Japanese experts came to a conclusion that the missile has a range of almost 3,500 miles.

    Earlier in the day, the South Korean Defense Ministry said that it is not sure whether Pyongyang has in fact achieved success in the development of the intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) as there is no proof that North Korea's latest missile returned to the atmosphere on Tuesday.

    The Russian Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that North Korea's missile only reached a maximum altitude of 332 miles and flew only 316 miles. According to the ministry, "the parametric data of the ballistic target’s flight correspond to tactical and technical characteristics of a medium-range ballistic missile."

    Hwasong-14, ICBMs, Japan, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK)
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