North Korea announces test of multiple rocket launcher system

North Korea announces test of multiple rocket launcher system
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North Korean leader Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnNorth Korean leader Kim apologizes over killing of South Korean official Pelosi knocks Trump over refusal to commit to peaceful transfer of power Satellite images indicate North Korea preparing for massive military parade MORE oversaw a test of a new multiple rocket launcher system that could better position the country to attack targets in South Korea, including U.S. military bases there, Pyongyang officials said Thursday, according to an Associated Press report.

North Korea’s state Korean Central News Agency contradicted the South Korean military’s assessment that the Wednesday launches involved two short-range ballistic missiles.  

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The state media outlet said the system would play a key role in the North Korean military’s land combat, according to the AP.

While it did not mention either South Korea or the U.S. directly, South Korean officials estimated the projectiles flew about 155 miles at an apogee of 19 miles, which would be far enough to reach Seoul and a major U.S. military base in the region.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said U.S. and South Korean defense officials had both determined the Wednesday launches resembled a similar short-range missile test North Korea conducted last week, according to the AP, although a Joint Chiefs official said further assessment was needed.

The two missile tests marked the first for North Korea since May and the first since President TrumpDonald John TrumpFederal prosecutor speaks out, says Barr 'has brought shame' on Justice Dept. Former Pence aide: White House staffers discussed Trump refusing to leave office Progressive group buys domain name of Trump's No. 1 Supreme Court pick MORE became the first sitting U.S. president to step foot in North Korea when he met with Kim in the Demilitarized Zone at the end of June.

Trump has repeatedly expressed confidence in his ability to reach a denuclearization deal with Kim, but one has yet to materialize despite the two leaders having met on multiple occasions, including in Vietnam earlier this year for a summit.

That meeting ended abruptly with no agreement reached.