Heightened tensions on Korean Peninsula following failed DPRK missile test

World Today

North Korea Koreas Tensions North Korean men, women and soldiers walk towards the venue for a flower festival as part of celebrations to mark the 105th birth anniversary of late leader Kim Il Sung on Sunday, April 16, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea. A North Korean missile exploded during launch Sunday, U.S. and South Korean officials said, a high-profile failure that comes as a powerful U.S. aircraft supercarrier approaches the Korean Peninsula in a show of force. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

Tensions are flaring on the Korean Peninsula following the latest missile test by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The launch occurred just hours before U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence arrived in Seoul. The test reportedly failed, but the Republic of Korea still described it as a threat to the world and warned of punitive action if Pyongyang attempts to test a long-range missile.

CGTN’s Jack Barton filed this report.

Hightened tensions on Korean Peninsula following failed DPRK missile test

Tensions are flaring on the Korean Peninsula following the latest missile test by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The launch occurred just hours before U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence arrived in Seoul. The test reportedly failed, but the Republic of Korea still described it as a threat to the world and warned of punitive action if Pyongyang attempts to test a long-range missile.

Following Sunday’s failed missile launch by the DPRK, the ROK’s foreign ministry warned Pyongyang that Seoul would take action if it does not halt all missile and nuclear bomb tests.

“If there are any intensive provocations, such as nuclear tests or Intercontinental Ballistic Missile launches, we warn once more that strong punitive measures, unbearable by the North Korean regime, will be taken,” said ROK Foreign ministry Spokesman Cho June-Hyucl during a press conference.

He also indicated that new anti-missile measures like the THAAD system could be fast-tracked.

In Pyongyang, people tried to put a positive spin on the failed test.

“If the news is true, failure is the mother of success. We will make more efforts to make even more powerful weapons in the future,” said one resident.

The test came just one day after the DPRK held a major military parade in which it showed off what appeared to be new long-range missiles.

Submarine missiles were also paraded, raising concerns in Seoul because their launch cannot be quickly detected by ROK radar systems.

The latest failed launch also came as US Vice President Mike Pence began a 10-day visit to Asia in Seoul, where he is to meet with the country’s acting president to discuss rising tensions on the peninsula.

“Let me assure you under, under President Trump’s leadership our resolve has never been stronger. Our commitment to this historic alliance with the courageous people of South Korea has never been stronger. And with your help, and with god’s help, freedom will ever prevail on this peninsula,” Pence said.

After the Republic of Korea, Pence will travel to Japan where the DPRK’s accelerated nuclear missile program is also expected to be high on the agenda.


International security expert Jim Walsh discusses tensions on the Korean Peninsula

Jim Walsh, an international security expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology joins CGTN America to discuss tensions on the Korean peninsula and the DPRK’s latest missile test.

Jim Walsh on tensions on the Korean peninsula

Jim Walsh, an international security expert at Massachusetts Institute of Technology joins CGTN America to discuss tensions on the Korean peninsula and DPRK's latest missile test.