China's Xi Pledges to Properly Address Differences With South Korea

An intercontinental ballistic missile launches in North Korea

North Korea fired three short-range ballistic missiles Saturday, the United States military said, reviving tensions with Washington after President Donald Trump had said Pyongyang was starting to show some "respect".

China's President Xi Jinping pledged to make concerted efforts with South Korea's President Moon Jae-in to address differences between the two countries properly, the official Xinhua news agency said on Thursday. Dave Benham says the two missiles flew about 155 miles.

He said that military would "proceed more thoroughly" with the ongoing Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercise, a joint training drill between South Korea and the USA that started Monday. "We are now analysing", Japan's Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said, adding that they did not fly on a "lofted" trajectory.

This latest North Korean missile test would be the 12th ballistic missile test this year.

Soon after North Korea launched another long-range missile on July 28, Moon ordered his government to seek the deployment of additional THAAD launchers to a southern county in addition to the two already deployed launchers. David Benham, a spokesman for U.S. Pacific Command, said the missile launches occurred "between 11:49 a.m. and 12:19 p.m. Hawaii time August 25".

The Korean Central News Agency said that the “target striking contest” involved war planes, multiple-rocket launchers and self-propelled guns that attacked targets meant to represent South Koreas Baengnyeong and Yeonpyeong islands before special operation combatants “landed by surprise” on rubber boats.

Tillerson had said he hoped that the lack of missiles launches or other "provocative acts" by Pyongyang could mean a path could be opening for dialogue "sometime in the near future".

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The US Senate had voted to impose sanctions against Iran over its missile program as well as human rights violations in late July. Under U.S. law, the State Department must notify Congress every 90 days of Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal .

Mr Tillerson said he was "pleased" to see Pyongyang had "demonstrated some level of restraint that we've not seen in the past".

"They could be ballistic missiles but they could be rockets".

But earlier this week the rhetoric appeared to be cooling - at least on the American side - as Trump expressed optimism about North Korea on Tuesday, saying of leader Kim Jong Un, "I respect the fact that he is starting to respect us".

North Korea has conducted two nuclear tests and dozens of missile tests since the beginning of past year.

President Donald Trump had warned he would unleash "fire and fury" if the North continued its provocation.

In a conciliatory move before that, Tillerson said the U.S. was willing to sit down for talks with North Korea, but only if it relinquishes its pursuit of nuclear weapons.

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