North Korea's Kim rejects olive branch from Trump

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In response to North Korea's earlier tests, U.S. President Donald Trump dispatched a naval strike group to waters off the Korean peninsula as a warning to the communist regime to end its nuclear weapons development program.

South Korea's military said the missile flew 500 km, reaching an altitude of 560 km, before landing off Japan's east coast and causing no damage.

Speaking to reporters ahead of a closed-door UN Security Council meeting, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley also made clear that Washington would only talk to North Korea once it halted its nuclear programme.

Chinese enterprises and banking institutions could be targeted with secondary sanctions because China accounts for about 90 percent of North Korea's trade in terms of total value.

Council members vowed to "fully and comprehensively" implement the six rounds of sanctions the U.N.'s most powerful body has already imposed against North Korea and strongly urged all other U.N. member nations "to do so in an expeditious and serious manner".

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"Many more Juche [North Korea's official state ideology] weapons capable of striking the U.S. will be launched from this land".

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered the launch from an observation post and approved its deployment after analyzing the results with officials and finding them ideal, the state news agency said. South Korea and the USA had earlier described Sunday's missile as medium-range.

US President Donald Trump, who is now visiting Saudi Arabia, has not yet respond to North Korea's latest act of provocation.

If North Korea did indeed fire the Pukguksong-2 again, it might be part of attempts to stabilize the system before operationally deploying the missiles, said Kim Dong-yub, an analyst at Seoul's Institute for Far Eastern Studies.

"At the same time, we hope all parties can maintain restraint, not be influenced by every single incident, . persist in carrying out Security Council resolutions on North Korea and persevere with the resolution of the issue through peaceful means, dialogue and consultation".

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The Sunday provocation marked the North's eighth missile test this year.

The solid-fuel Pukguksong-2 missile flew about 310 miles and reached a height of 350 miles on Sunday before plunging into the Pacific Ocean.

He noted the Pukguksong-2's solid fuel is of particular concern.

The launch came just one week after the North fired a Hwasong-12 intermediate-range missile, which according to Pyongyang flew nearly 800 kilometres and was capable of carrying a "heavy" nuclear warhead.

Analysts said that at 4,500 km the Hwasong-12 had a longer range than any previous ballistic missile successfully tested by the North, putting USA bases on the Pacific island of Guam within reach - and that it could serve as a platform to develop a long-range inter-continental ballistic missile.

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Solid fuel is like an explosive jelly, and less corrosive than liquid fuel, meaning it can be easily stored in the rocket's fuel tank, unlike the liquid alternative, which requires specially lined tanks.

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