Home / World News / North Korea hit own city with botched missile launch, report claims

North Korea hit own city with botched missile launch, report claims

North Korea hit one of its own cities during a botched ballistic missile test last year, according to a report.

A Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile was launched from North Korea’s Pukchang Airfield on 28 April.

It flew around 24 miles to the northeast before failing and coming down on the city of Tokchon, according to news website The Diplomat.

The missile struck a complex of industrial or agricultural facilities in the city, which is about two hours from the North Korean capital.



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Citing satellite imagery, The Diplomat said there were also residential and commercial buildings nearby and people in them would likely have heard the explosion.

It was not known if there were casualties.

The city has a population of around 200,000.

Images from the area show ground disturbances where there had previously been a building with fencing.


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US officials had said the missile was initially thought to have disintegrated mid-flight after it was fired.

The US and other countries have been struggling to deter North Korea leader Kim Jong Un from pursuing nuclear capabilities.

Earlier in the week, North Korea and South Korea reopened a long-closed border hotline, hours after US president Donald Trump boasted that his nuclear launch button was “bigger and more powerful” than Mr Kim’s.

The North and South have also announced talks planned for 9 January.


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General Vincent K Brooks, lead commander of the US Forces in Korea, said the US and South Korea must maintain an “ironclad and razor sharp” alliance and be ready if talks between the two Koreas lead to a “negative outcome”.

Mr Trump has repeatedly described Mr Kim as “Little Rocket Man” and Mr Kim has called Mr Trump a “dotard”, among many insults traded between the two.

They have also both threatened to destroy the other, causing growing alarm worldwide.

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