EU expands sanctions against North Korea

North Korea this week fired a projectile which flew about 60 kilometers (37 miles) into the East Sea, South Korea's military leadership said.

The latest North Korean missile test Wednesday, launched near the country's submarine base in Sinpo, could indicate the military is developing counter measures to defend against the threat of a USA preemptive strike and to nullify the advantage of the THAAD missile defense system being deployed in the South.

"We have no further comment", Tillerson said in the statement.

The firing was also made as North Korea expressed anger over annual military drills between the United States and South Korea that the North sees as an invasion rehearsal.

The Security Council on Thursday strongly condemned North Korea's latest ballistic missile launch and demanded a halt to all missile tests, stressing again that they violate United Nations sanctions and "are significantly increasing tension in the region and beyond".

North Korea failed in an attempt to launch a ballistic missile from its east coast two weeks ago.

Japan has lodged a protest following a reported North Korea ballistic missile launch.

The launch was near Kalma in eastern Wonsan province, where North Korea previously attempted to test its mobile-launched Musudan intermediate-range ballistic missile.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (front) stands on the conning tower of a submarine during his inspection of the Korean People's Army (KPA) Naval Unit 167 in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang June 16, 2014.

"As adversaries continue to pursue credible and advanced capabilities, we too must evolve our missile defense capabilities to outpace increasingly complex threats", she said. Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said it saw no "certain link" between the missile launch and the summit, even as she called for restraint from all parties.

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The country faced severe sanctions from the UN Security Council for a series of launches previous year, in addition to two nuclear tests.

A North Korean flag, center, is displayed during 2017 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship Division II Group A game at Kwandong Hockey Center in Gangneung, South Korea, Wednesday, April 5, 2017.

USA officials have not identified what type of missile was tested on March 21 since it exploded so soon after launch.

"We are exploring a new range of security and diplomatic measures".

North Korea has continued with military provocation this year.

Speaking with CEOs at a town hall meeting at the White House on Tuesday, Trump previewed his upcoming meeting with Xi Jinping taking place at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida over two days from Thursday.

"China has great influence over North Korea".

North Korea test-fired four missiles last month that reached as far as Japan's exclusive economic zone.

Trump has said repeatedly that Kim is behaving "very badly" and China has done little to bring its neighbor into line.

Even before the missile test, North Korea's nuclear program was expected to be an important talking point between Xi and Trump. North Korea called that test a success, but some outside analysts said it might test the weapon again before deploying it.

  • Megan Austin