North Korea fires second ballistic missile

North Korea has fired a second ballistic missile across Japan.

The missile flew higher and further than the one fired last month, reaching an altitude of 770km and travelling 3,700km before landing in the sea off Hokkaido.

Observers say it is likely to have been an intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM) though Japanese officials believe there is still a possibility it was an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

South Korea responded within minutes by firing two ballistic missiles into the sea in a simulated strike on the North.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said his country would ‘never tolerate’ such ‘dangerous provocative action’.

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said of the lauch: "North Korea has conducted yet another illegal missile launch. The UK and the international community have condemned the aggressive and illegal actions of the North Korean regime, and the succession of missile and nuclear tests. We stand firmly by Japan and our other international partners. We are working to mobilise world opinion with the aim of achieving a diplomatic solution to the situation on the Korean peninsula.

"This week the most stringent UN sanctions regime placed on any nation in the 21st century was imposed on North Korea, after being unanimously agreed at the UN Security Council. These measures now need to be robustly enforced. We urge all states to play their part in changing the course North Korea is taking."

Rex Tillerson, US Secretary of State, also condemned the launch and the UN Security Council will meet soon at the request of America and Japan.

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