The South Korean military said Wednesday that a North Korean missile fired from Pyongyang exploded shortly after launch.
The North Korean missile exploded while flying at an altitude of less than 20 kilometres, according to a South Korean military official. The official said the cause of the explosion remained unknown.
However, the launch, the tenth of its kind this year, demonstrates North Korea’s determination to immediately modernize its arsenal by putting pressure on its opponents.
The missile probably exploded less than a minute after launch, according to Lee Choon Geun, an honorary researcher at the South Korean Institute for Science and Technology Policy.
He noted that if the toxic missile fuel fell into residential areas in North Korea, it would have a significant impact on the health of the population. The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command later confirmed that North Korea had fired a ballistic missile, but did not say whether the launch was successful.
According to the administration, the launch did not pose an immediate threat to US territory or to its allies, but it did urge North Korea to refrain from further destabilizing action.