(Image: Picture released on January 20, 2017 by KCNA showing a Musudan test launch from June 2016. Source: Yonhap News Agency)
North Korea test-fired a missile on Sunday, an action meant to test President Trump’s stance on the country. It also is a test to celebrate the birthday of Kim Jung-il. The missile flew 500km before falling into the East Sea (Sea of Japan)[BBC]. This is the first missile test since President Trump took the oath of office and officially became President of the United States on January 20. Currently, South Korean officials are still trying to gather information about the type of missile which was launched; evidence currently points that it most likely was a Nodong scud-type missile or a Musudan intermediate ballistic missile (IRBM)[Yonhap]. As a response, South Korea’s National Security Council convened an emergency session at 9:30am (local time). President Trump has yet to respond.
Kim Jung-un has been constantly obstreperous in the face of mounting international pressure and sanctions, opting to continue a rapid push for a diverse set of missiles and operable nuclear weapons. If Kim follows a path consistent with the past few years, North Korea will test many nuclear weapons before the year is out. Will update with more details when they become available.