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North Korea fires submarine-launched missile, South says

By Daniel Uria
North Korea fires submarine-launched missile, South says
South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said that North Korea has launched what appears to be a submarine-launched ballistic missile. According to South Korean, military sources SLBM reportedly traveled a short distance while remaining airborne for "a few minutes." Photo by Katherine Welles/Shutterstock

SEOUL, April 23 (UPI) -- North Korea fired what appeared to be a ballistic missile from a submarine, the South Korean military said.

According to the news agency Yonhap, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff confirmed North Korea fired a projectile that it believes was a submarine-launched ballistic missile around 6:30 p.m. local time. Yonhap reported the missile traveled about 19 miles, falling short of its minimum range of nearly 190 miles.

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A South Korean government source said the missile's engine ignited after it was ejected from a 2,000-ton Sinpo-class submarine. It apparently traveled a short distance while remaining airborne for "a few minutes."

On Friday, U.S. and South Korea military surveillance captured movements at North Korea's Punggye-ri nuclear site showing the country preparing for its fifth nuclear test, ahead of Pyongyang's Seventh Party Congress.

Earlier this month, a South Korean military source said the North successfully launched a ballistic missile on April 6, despite reports to the contrary.

Pyongyang also claimed a successful underwater launch in May 2015 and shared a propaganda video depicting a similar missile striking Washington in March.

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