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North Korea’s missile test may have failed, US official says

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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (Photo credit: Rodong Sinmun)

North Korea on Saturday launched a missile that blew up over land, a US official said.

The missile failed to reach the Sea of Japan, also known as the East Sea, the official added.

A US military assessment found the main part of the missile landed approximately 35 kilometers from Pukchang airfield, the official said.

The test-fired missile probably was a medium-range ballistic missile called a KN-17, the US official said. The KN-17 is a land-based solid-fuel missile fired from a mobile launcher.

There has been no announcement on North Korean state television, CNN’s Will Ripley in Pyongyang reported.

It is the ninth attempted missile launch — by CNN’s count — since Donald Trump became US president in January.

The launch came hours after US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson addressed a special meeting at the United Nations, calling for increased pressure on North Korea.

“All options for responding to future provocations must remain on the table,” Tillerson said. “Diplomatic and financial leverage or power will be backed up by willingness to counteract North Korean aggression with military action, if necessary.”

Uruguay UN Ambassador Elbio Rosselli condemned the apparent missile test.

The ambassador, who sits on the UN Security Council, said, “That’s very disgraceful.”

He said that it was “against international law and humanity.”