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North Korea rocket-engine test shows 'meaningful' progress - South Korea

20 March 2017, 01:29 | Winston Chapman

Leader Kim Jong Un said the successful test was "a new birth" of its rocket industry, the North's official media said yesterday.

North Korea, banned from conducting long-range missile testing, claims its satellite program is intended for peaceful use.

State news agency said Kim had overseen the operation and "emphasized that the whole world will soon witness what eventful significance the great victory won today carries", KCNA reported, hinting that the North could use the new engine to launch a rocket to put a satellite in orbit.

The engine was tested at the Sohae Satellite Launching Station, a major space facility on the country's northwest coast, from which North Korea successfully launched its first satellite into orbit in December 2012.

A VIP is among several more people police are looking for to help in the murder probe of North Korean Kim Jong-nam, says Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar. North Korea is one of just four United Nations members not party to the Chemical Weapons Convention, which bans its use.

But a fifth missile fired by North Korea failed.

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In Seoul, Tillerson also warned that United States military action against Pyongyang was possible - a sharp divergence from China's insistence on a diplomatic approach to its neighbour, which it has long protected.

The rocket engine test came hours before Tillerson met Chinese President Xi Jinping, and a day after America's top diplomat warned that all options - including military action - remained on the table when it came to dealing with North Korea.

North Korea has issued a threat of nuclear war against the United States and its ally, South Korea, in retaliation for even the a misdirected shot fired in its direction during the war games being conducted by the USA and South Korean militaries.

"The government is doing its best to be amicable to the countries so that the country would not shoot a missile", Chief Cabinet Counselor Atsushi Odani said.

The test site is close to where North Korea launched four extended-range Scud missiles into the Sea of Japan earlier this month.



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