Kim wants to meet again, apologized for missile tests

Despite missile tests US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is hopeful talks with North Korea about denuclearisation will resume in coming weeks

Read more Despite recent missile launches Pompeo ‘hopeful’ of North Korea denuclearisation

During the past two weeks, the North has conducted a series of test launches.

North Korea yesterday said that leader Kim Jong-un supervised test-firings of an unspecified new weapons system, which extended a streak of launches that are seen as an attempt to build leverage ahead of negotiations with the U.S., while driving a wedge between the USA and South Korea.

North Korea showed off more missiles on Sunday, hours after President Donald Trump said he's not anxious about the recent spate of launches and raised hope for new nuclear talks with the communist state.

He also maintained that he is not phased by the recent launches and says North Korea has yet to break its promise to stop nuclear tests. He added that the new missile seemed to be one that disperses its submunitions from the warhead.

Defense officials in Seoul said what appeared to be two short-range ballistic missiles were fired at daybreak from near the northeastern city of Hamhung, flying 400 kilometers before splashing down in the sea. "It was also a small apology for testing the short range missiles".

The statement came as South Korea and the United States began their joint computer-based exercise called "Combined Command Post Training" for the second half of the year. Ju Yong-chol, a North Korean diplomat, called the actions "hostile acts" and accused the USA of "inciting military tensions".

Trump reiterated that he was not bothered by the flurry of short-range weapons Kim has launched despite the growing threat they pose to U.S. allies in the region, saying Pyongyang has never broken its pledge to pause nuclear tests.

But the North said that changing the name of the military exercise can not hide what it claimed is an "aggressive war game" against the regime.

Trump tweeted that in his letter, Kim complained about the exercises, but apologized for the tests and wrote that they will cease when the exercises stop.

Kim Dong-yub, a researcher at the Institute for Far Eastern Studies, said the weapons were likely to be new short-range ballistic missiles that are part of Pyongyang's modernisation of its military capabilities.

But North Korea mocked those efforts in a separate report on Sunday, although it focused on the South and avoided criticizing Trump.

The North also on Saturday lashed out at South Korea s recent acquisition of USA -made F-35 fighter jets and other plans to expand its military capabilities, saying that the South will gain "nothing but destruction" if it pursues a contest of strength with the North.

In a statement released through KCNA, Kwon Jong Gun, director of the USA affairs department at Pyongyang s Foreign Ministry, criticized South Korea for raising concerns over the North s recent testing activity while continuing the drills with the U.S.

South Korea's presidential office dismissed the saber rattling.

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