Russia is investigating whether a North Korean ICBM crashed in its waters during a test launch on Wednesday, Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Rudenko was quoted as saying by state media.
The RIA and TASS news agencies quoted Rudenko as saying the Russian Defense Ministry was investigating, but «so far we have no clear information that the missile fell in Russia’s economic zone.»
The Hwasong-18 missile is the core of North Korea’s nuclear strike force and the test fire was a «strong practical warning» to the United States and other adversaries, the country’s state media said when reporting the launch.
The test was condemned by the United States, South Korea and Japan, but Russia’s Rudenko said it was a reaction to actions by Washington and its allies that «actually cause North Korea to increase its defense power.»
North Korea has been under United Nations sanctions over its nuclear and missile programs since 2006, but the UN Security Council has been divided in recent years over how to deal with it.
Russia and Porcelainwho have veto powers in the council, have said more sanctions will not help and want such measures eased.
UN Assistant Secretary General Khaled Khiari said Thursday that North Korea’s latest missile flight lasted about 74 minutes and traveled more than 625 miles. Khiari said it crashed into the sea inside Russia’s exclusive economic zone, but close to Japanese waters.