N Korea missile fell into sea, no threat to N America: US Strategic Command

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un gives field guidance to Pyongyang Orphans' Secondary School in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA)
PHOTO: Reuters

SEOUL - A North Korean ballistic missile fired from a submarine on Saturday likely failed in the early stage of flight, the South's military said.

The missile was likely fired from the submarine as planned but appears to have failed in the early stage of flight, the South's office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

The missile launch into waters east of the Korean peninsula comes days after new U.S. sanctions targeting the isolated country's leader for human rights abuses.

The US Strategic Command said on Saturday it had tracked what it believed was a KN-11 submarine-launched ballistic missile fired from North Korea's east coast port of Sinpo, which then fell into the sea between the North and Japan.

The command said in a statement the missile was tracked over the Sea of Japan, "where initial indications are it fell". The North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD) determined the missile did not pose a threat to North America, it said.

The Sea of Japan is known as the East Sea in South Korea.

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