The intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14 is seen in this undated photo released by KCNA
The intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14 is seen in this undated photo released by KCNA Reuters

North Korea confirmed on Sunday it had fired a Hwasong-12 "mid-range ballistic missile", AFP reported, citing official North Korean media.

This marks the first time Pyongyang has tested a weapon that powerful since 2017.

Seoul's military said earlier on Sunday that it had detected the launch of an intermediate-range ballistic missile, Pyongyang's seventh weapons test in January.

"The evaluation test-fire of Hwasong 12-type ground-to-ground intermediate- and long-range ballistic missile was conducted Sunday," the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.

The test "confirmed the accuracy, security and effectiveness of the operation of the Hwasong 12-type weapon system under production," KCNA added.

The test was carried out using the "highest-angle launch system" to ensure the safety of neighboring countries, and the warhead carried a camera that took photos while it was in space, the report said.

On Thursday, North Korea confirmed that it conducted tests of an upgraded long-range cruise missile and a warhead of a tactical guided missile.

Last week, North Korea warned it would bolster its defenses against the United States and consider restarting "all temporally-suspended activities," an apparent reference to a self-imposed moratorium on testing its nuclear bombs and long-range missiles.

North Korea regularly launches ballistic missiles and had a series of such tests in late 2021, the most recent of which was in October when it test-fired a new ballistic missile from a submarine.

Pyongyang restarted its missile tests after denuclearization talks with the United States came to a halt.