North Korea’s Missile Tests

North Korea recently carried out one of its boldest missile tests yet in the North Korean province of Jagang. It was soon confirmed to be the Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile, with the most powerful launch in the past 5 years. The South Korean military stated that it was their seventh test in January alone, startling the international community.

The missile was estimated to reach an altitude of 1240 miles, flying for approximately 30 minutes for 500 miles. North Korea’s largest ally, China, has been irritated by the launches amidst the Winter Olympics and Lunar New Year celebrations, but they haven’t done anything major to stop them. 

International powers including Japan, South Korea, and the USA have, therefore, held meetings in Honolulu to announce unity against North Korea, where they created a joint statement stating that, “Pyongyang needs to cease its unlawful activities and instead engage in dialogue.” 

The USA has also recognized the test as “increasingly destabilizing.” It was viewed to not only be launched with the purpose of refining their weapons, but also send a message to the United States. They have also tried several methods to reach out to Pyongyang for diplomatic talks but haven’t received any response. 

The USA has, therefore, reached out to the United Nations at the U.N. Security Council in hopes to put additional sanctions on North Korea. Russia and China, however, blocked this proposal. This has just worsened the American’s already declining relationship with China and Russia. 

North Korea’s missile test has raised tensions with missile provocations. This combined with South Korea’s upcoming presidential elections is predicted to create an “extreme situation” unless some negotiations are made.