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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

N. Korea conducts 3 missile trials after nuke test - Yonhap

RIA Novosti

14:2325/05/2009 MOSCOW, May 25 (RIA Novosti) - North Korea carried out on Monday a total of three test launches of short-range ground-to-air missiles following a successful nuclear test, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said.

North Korea announced earlier in the day it had conducted a successful underground nuclear test explosion "as part of the measures to bolster its nuclear deterrent for self-defense."

Citing an unidentified South Korean source, Yonhap said the first launch of a ground-to-air missile with a range of 130 kilometers (80 miles) from its northeastern Musudan-ri launch site was conducted shortly after the nuclear test and was followed several hours later by two additional missile launches.

The agency did not give any further details on the missile launches.

Russia's Defense Ministry confirmed on Monday that North Korea had conducted a nuclear test with a yield of about 20 kilotons, and said it would closely monitor the situation.

The UN Security Council is scheduled to convene for emergency consultations at 16:00 EDT (20:00 GMT) on Monday and could decide to hold an emergency meeting on the issue.

Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso said Tokyo would seek a new UN resolution condemning North Korea's move.

The reclusive communist regime had been threatening for several weeks to resume work at its Yongbyon nuclear facility, which produces weapons-grade plutonium, after withdrawing from six-nation talks. The move came in response to international condemnation of an April 5 rocket launch, which Pyongyang said was carrying a communications satellite.

North Korea had also said it would conduct further nuclear tests and rocket launches to ensure its security and defense capability.

Pyongyang withdrew from the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 2003 and conducted its first nuclear test explosion in October 2006.


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