North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un labeled North Korea’s latest missile tests “perfect”, state media said Tuesday, as he called for the communist state to build up its nuclear arsenal.
Hours before the UN Security Council was set to meet to discuss Pyongyang’s latest missile test, the country’s supreme leader hailed Monday’s firing of three mid-range weapons.
Kim supervised a drill by artillery units “tasked to strike the bases of the US imperialist aggressor forces in the Pacific operational theatre in a contingency,” Pyongyang’s KCNA news agency said.
“The units’ capability for fighting a real battle and the combat performance of the rockets were appreciated as perfect,” it said.
“He stressed the need to continue making miraculous achievements in bolstering up the nuclear force one after another in this historic year,” it added.
South Korea’s defense ministry said the tests were of Rodong missiles with a range of 1,000 kilometers (620 miles). It said they had been fired over the Sea of Japan (East Sea) without warning.
The Rodong is a scaled-up Scud variant with a maximum range of around 1,300 kilometers, bringing most of Japan within range.
The launches came as world leaders gathered in neighboring China for the G20 summit, sparking condemnation from Japan and the United States, which blasted them as “reckless”.
Those calls were set to intensify later Tuesday when the 15-member UN Security Council convenes in New York to consider a response to the latest in a series of tests, which has also included the detonation of a nuclear bomb in January.