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CBRN Assessment

North Korea test-fires another ballistic missile that overflies Japan

15 September 2017

For the second time in two-and-a-half weeks North Korea has test-fired a ballistic missile, which flew over northern Japan before falling into the Pacific Ocean, further stoking regional tensions.

The missile was launched in a northeasterly direction from a site near Sunan, in the vicinity of Pyongyang, on 15 September at around 0657 h local time, and flew for about 19 minutes before falling into the ocean some 2,200 km east of Cape Erimo in Japan’s Hokkaido Prefecture, according to the Ministry of Defense (MoD) in Tokyo.

The MoD said that the missile, which flew over Cape Erimo and the Oshima Peninsula, reached an altitude of approximately 800 km and travelled a linear distance of 3,700 km: far enough to potentially reach the US island territory of Guam in the western Pacific, which Pyongyang has described as “an advanced base of invasion”.

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