North Korea confirmed on Thursday that it successfully launched a new missile from a submarine on Wednesday, saying it was a "new phase for containing outside forces' threats."
The confirmation comes a day after the Hermit Kingdom said it would renew nuclear talks with Washington this weekend.
A submarine-based missile is a significant upgrade in North Korea's arsenal, enabling its deployment capabilities beyond its own peninsula.
'The new-type ballistic missile was fired in vertical mode' on Wednesday in the waters off Wonsan Bay," the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said. “The successful new-type SLBM test-firing comes to be of great significance as it ushered in a new phase in containing the outside forces’ threat to the DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] and further bolstering its military muscle for self-defence.”
According to United Nations Security Council resolutions, North Korea is banned from ballistic missile launches.
"The North is trying to convey a message that time is not on the side of the United States and that it could take a different path if the working-level talks don't go the way it wanted," said Du Hyeogn Cha, a visiting scholar at Seoul's Asan Institute for Policy Studies.