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Latest NKorean missile was a Scud: US official
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) April 5, 2017

A US defense official said Wednesday that the latest missile fired by North Korea was an extended-range Scud, and suffered an in-flight failure.

"A Scud ER (extended range) flew about 60 kilometers before suffering an in-flight failiure and crashing into the Sea of Japan," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

US and South Korean officials had previously said the missile was a KN-15 medium-range ballistic missile.

Scud missiles are liquid fueled, whereas the KN-15 use solid fuels, meaning they are more mobile and quicker to launch.

Wednesday's missile launch was from a "fixed site" near Sinpo, the official said.

Eritrea slams US sanctions after N.Korea military deal
Addis Ababa (AFP) April 4, 2017 - Eritrea has criticised the United States for slapping "misguided" sanctions on its navy, a month after it emerged the secretive Horn of Africa nation tried to buy military equipment from North Korea.

The US announced last week it had banned dealings with the Eritrean navy under a non-proliferation law which prohibits trading in certain military equipment with North Korea, Syria and Iran.

While no details were given, the move comes after a United Nations sanctions monitoring body reported in February that an air shipment of military-grade communications equipment had been intercepted on its way to Eritrea from North Korea via China.

Eritrea's information ministry said in a statement seen by AFP on Tuesday that the sanctions were "inexplicable and unwarranted".

"The pattern is sadly the same. Fallacious reports are first floated and illicit measures subsequently announced by the same architects who act as the plaintiff, prosecutor and judge," said the statement.

"Misguided policies that emanate from this malicious standpoint have failed in the past."

Eritrea has been under UN Security Council sanctions since 2009 that froze assets and travel for political and military leaders and banned arms sales to the country over its suspected support of Islamist Al-Shabaab militants in neighbouring Somalia.

Those sanctions are due for review at the end of this month, and the Eritrean government said the new US measures were meant to encourage their renewal.

Details of the two-year sanctions banning the US government and some private exporters from doing business with the Eritrean navy were published by Washington on its federal register.

In a teleconference with reporters, a senior State Department official declined to elaborate on why the Eritrean navy was singled out in the new sanctions, according to a transcript of the discussion.

Eritrea, one of the most isolated countries in the world, has faced increasing international criticism after last year's release of a UN report accusing the government of President Isaias Afwerki of crimes against humanity.

Tens of thousands of Eritreans are believed to have fled Afwerki's hardline regime, which forces people to join a national service programme the UN report likened to "enslavement".

A former Italian colony, Eritrea was later annexed by Ethiopia with whom it fought a 30-year war before finally declaring independence in 1993. No election has been organised since independence and authorities crack down on all opposition.

U.S. Navy launches LRASM missile from Super Hornet
Washington (UPI) Apr 3, 2017
Lockheed Martin's Long Range Anti-Ship Missile was launched from a Super Hornet aircraft for the first time during a recent validation test with the U.S. Navy. The missile, also referred to as LRASM, is a precision-guided anti-ship weapon designed to track and destroy specific targets within enemy groups. According to Lockheed Martin, the recent test with the missile validated its air-t ... read more

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