Kim cautioned that the test demonstrated North Korea’s potential response if Washington were to make “an erroneous decision” against the nation. According to the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), he stated that the launch conveyed “a distinct message to the hostile forces” who had escalated their irresponsible military confrontations against his country.
Kim underlined the need to “never overlook all the reckless and irresponsible military threats of the enemies and to strongly counter them with more offensive actions.”
KCNA added that Kim had presented “some new important tasks for accelerating the development of the DPRK’s [North Korea’s] nuclear strategic forces,” although the agency did not elaborate.
What do we know about the missile test?
KCNA said that Kim, accompanied by his daughter, had watched the launch at a site east of the capital, Pyongyang.
The missile reached an altitude of 6,518 kilometers (4,050 miles), flying some 1,000 kilometers in distance, the agency said.
The defense ministries of Japan and South Korea gave similar figures about the flight, which lasted 73 minutes.
Both South Korea and Japan said data showed the missile had the range to hit anywhere in the United States. Both countries, along with the US, condemned the launch as a flagrant violation of UN Security Council resolutions.
The missile accurately hit its intended target, an empty patch of sea, KCNA added.
Tokyo said the missile landed in the sea west of the northern island of Hokkaido, outside Japan’s exclusive economic zone.
South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol said the regime in Pyongyang would “come to realize provocative actions will only bring greater pain to itself.”
The test came a day after a nuclear-powered US submarine arrived in the South Korean port of Busan. It also followed a US-South Korean warning that any nuclear attack from the North would spell “the end of the Kim regime.”
Pyongyang has carried out a record-breaking number of tests of banned weapons this year.
Since North Korea first conducted a nuclear test in 2006, the UN Security Council has adopted a string of resolutions demanding that North Korea halt its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.