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Balance of Power: Can North Korea now hit America with its new ballistic missile

LiveMint logoLiveMint 04-07-2017 Brendan Scott

Singapore/London: The US has dreaded the day that North Korea developed a missile capable of hitting the homeland with a nuclear warhead. That day may have come on 4 July.

With footage of goosestepping troops and patriotic songs, North Korean state TV announced the country’s first successful test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of striking “anywhere in the world.” The rocket reached an altitude of 2,800 kilometers (1,740 miles), suggesting Kim could for the first time put Alaska in his sights.

While South Korea and Japan are still verifying whether North Korea has indeed joined the ICBM club, the missile’s trajectory confirms Kim’s progress in securing the technology needed to threaten the continental US — something Donald Trump vowed “won’t happen.” Now, as he marks his first Independence Day as president, he has little to show for his troubles but frustration with the pace of China’s efforts to rein in its neighbour. The test ensures that North Korea dominates discussions when Trump meets Chinese President Xi Jinping on Friday at the Group of 20 summit in Germany. After that? No one has any good options. Bloomberg

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