North Korea launches ballistic missile into Sea of Japan

'Does this guy have anything better to do with his life?' asks Trump, in Twitter jibe at Kim Jong-un

Kim Jong-Un
North Korea's leader Kim Jong-Un
(Image credit: Getty)

North Korea has launched a ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan in an apparent attempt to provoke the US.

"The launch occurred hours before Independence Day began in the United States," says the New York Times. "In 2006, as the July 4 holiday was still being celebrated, North Korea test-fired six ballistic missiles."

The missile test was the 11th this year and came hours after China's ambassador to the United Nations, Liu Jieyo, warned of "disastrous" consequences if efforts to rein in the rogue state were not successful.

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"If tension only goes up... then sooner or later it will get out of control and the consequences would be disastrous," he said, The Guardian reports.

The missile appeared to have been launched from the city of Banghyon in North Pyongan, a province near North Korea's border with China, according to South Korean and Japanese officials. It travelled for about 575 miles.

Donald Trump reacted to the launch on Twitter, mocking North Korean leader Kim Jong-un:

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The US President recently held a summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in in Washington, during which he said his country was running out of patience with Pyongyang.

"Trump and Moon agreed to apply 'maximum pressure' to persuade North Korea to abandon its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, but agreed they were open to dialogue with the regime 'under the right circumstances'," The Guardian reports.

The irony of Trump encouraging Kim to use his time more wisely will not be lost on his critics, adds the paper.

"The president has been widely ridiculed in recent days over his Twitter 'body-slamming' of CNN and his spat with Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe politics show."

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