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North Korea says it launched two missiles from a railway platform

North Korea launched two short-range missiles from a train on Friday, state media said on Saturday, the third weapons test since the start of the year, despite new US sanctions.

These trials were organized to “verify and judge the railway regiment’s mastery of action procedures”, said the official KCNA news agency in Pyongyang.

Friday’s launch came after Washington’s decision on Wednesday to impose new financial sanctions on five North Korean nationals, following previous missile tests claimed to be hypersonic.

Friday’s launch “demonstrated high maneuverability and a high success rate,” according to the KCNA.

Discussions were held “on the establishment of a missile operating system by rail throughout the country”, adds the agency.

The shots took place at 14H36 and 14H432 (11H36 and 05H52 GMT) and the missiles traveled a distance of 432 km at an altitude of 36 km heading east on the Korean peninsula, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

This was the third North Korean weapons test this month this, after two successful hypersonic tests according to Pyongyang, a first on January 5 and then a second, supervised in person by leader Kim Jong Un, on 11 January.

In response, the United States imposed new sanctions on Pyongyang this week, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying North Korea was likely trying to “catch attention” with the round of you rs of missiles.

Pyongyang has accused the United States of “intentionally” aggravating the situation.

The dialogue between Pyongyang and Washington remains in the Deadlock after talks between Kim Jong Un and then US President Donald Trump broke down in 2019.

North Korea proceeded for the first time to a test missile launch from a train in September 2021.