Report: North Korea transporting missile launcher in possible preparation for launch

Two days after its hydrogen bomb test, Pyongyang transported a ballistic missile launcher to the country’s west coast, according to a report by a South Korean news outlet. South Korean military sources warned that preparations for an additional North Korean launch were identified.

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Amid the tensions following its hydrogen bomb test, North Korea has been spotted transporting an intercontinental missile launcher to the west coast of the country, according to a report by a South Korean news outlet quoting an unidentified intelligence source on Tuesday.

On Monday, South Korean security officials announced that they identified preparations for an additional ballistic missile launch by North Korea. Meanwhile, the South Korean navy carried out a live ammunition military exercise as a show of force to its neighbor in the north.

According to the reports, the transport of the launcher began Monday night, one day after the dictatorship’s sixth nuclear test, and was timed to avoid detection. Furthermore, Pyongyang reportedly established several launching bases in the area to which the launcher was moved.

The South Korean Defense Minister said that he cannot confirm that the item transported was indeed an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launcher but added that Pyongyang is prepared to launch additional missiles, including ICBMs.

South Korean missile exercise Photo Credit: CNN/Channel 2 News

The South Korean Defense Ministry spokesperson addressed his country’s decision, in full cooperation with the US, to remove the restrictions on the permitted payloads of its missiles. “In light of the growing threat from North Korea, the leaders of the two countries [South Korea and the US] decided to remove the restrictions,” said the spokesperson, adding that his government will continue to closely cooperate with the US. “We hope that such a change will help with finding a better solution to North Korea’s threats.”

The White House released a message Monday night confirming that US President Donald Trump has generally approved the removal of limitations on South Korea’s ballistic capabilities.

According to the White House, the President agreed to strengthen the joint military capabilities of the two countries during a phone call with his South Korean counterpart. During the conversation, Trump consented to permit South Korea to purchase billions of dollars’ worth of American military equipment.

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