Pyongyang claims US within missile range
SEOUL - Agence France-Presse
Ground-to-air missiles are displayed during a parade in Pyongyang in this photo. AFP photoNorth Korea has said it possessed rockets capable of striking the U.S. mainland, as it slammed a new U.S.-South Korean deal to extend the range of the South’s missile systems.
A National Defense Commission spokesman yesterday said Pyongyang would retaliate “in kind” to any U.S. or South Korean nuclear or missile attack. He said the North’s military, including “strategic rocket forces,” had a “scope of strike” that not only covered U.S. and South Korean bases in South Korea, “but also Japan, Guam and the U.S. mainland.” The warnings came after South Korea announced an agreement with the U.S to almost triple the range of its missiles to cover the whole of North Korea.
South Korean analysts largely dismissed the claim as military bluster, saying there was no evidence the North had obtained a working inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) since a failed rocket launch in April. North Korea is known to have an ICBM in development, the Taepodong-2, but it has never been tested successfully. Pyongyang said failed rocket launch was a bid to put a satellite into orbit. The U.S. insisted it was a disguised test using a variant of the Taepodong-2.