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SKorea: North moved missile with 'considerable range' to coast, but not capable of hitting US

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    A South Korean security guard works to turn back vehicles as they were refused to enter to Kaesong, North Korea, at the customs, immigration and quarantine office in Paju, South Korea, near the border village of Panmunjom, Thursday, April 4, 2013. North Korea on Wednesday barred South Korean workers from entering a jointly run factory park just over the heavily armed border in the North, officials in Seoul said, a day after Pyongyang announced it would restart its long-shuttered plutonium reactor and increase production of nuclear weapons material. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)The Associated Press

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    Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel speaks at the National Defense University at Fort McNair in Washington, Wednesday, April 3, 2013. Hagel labeled North Korea's rhetoric as a real, clear danger and threat to the U.S. and its Asia-Pacific allies. He said the U.S. is doing all it can to defuse the situation, echoing comments a day earlier by Secretary of State John Kerry. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)The Associated Press

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    South Korean drivers wait to head the North Korea's city of Kaesong, at the customs, immigration and quarantine office in Paju, South Korea, near the border village of Panmunjom, Thursday, April 4, 2013. North Korea on Wednesday barred South Korean workers from entering a jointly run factory park just over the heavily armed border in the North, officials in Seoul said, a day after Pyongyang announced it would restart its long-shuttered plutonium reactor and increase production of nuclear weapons material. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)The Associated Press

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    In this Sept. 21, 2012 photo, North Korean workers assemble Western-style suits at the South Korean-run ShinWon Corp. garment factory inside the Kaesong industrial complex in Kaesong, North Korea. On Wednesday, April 3, 2013, North Korea refused entry to South Koreans trying to cross the Demilitarized Zone to get to their jobs managing factories in the North Korean city of Kaesong. Pyongyang had threatened in recent days to close the border in anger over South Korea's support of U.N. sanctions punishing North Korea for conducting a nuclear test in February. (AP Photo/Jean H. Lee)The Associated Press

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    In this Sept. 21, 2012 photo, a North Korean worker handles wires at a South Korean-run factory inside the Kaesong industrial complex in Kaesong, North Korea. On Wednesday, April 3, 2013, North Korea refused entry to South Koreans trying to cross the Demilitarized Zone to get to their jobs managing factories in the North Korean city of Kaesong. Pyongyang had threatened in recent days to close the border in anger over South Korea's support of U.N. sanctions punishing North Korea for conducting a nuclear test in February. (AP Photo/Jean H. Lee)The Associated Press

South Korea's defense minister says North Korea has moved a missile with "considerable range" to its east coast, but says it is not capable of hitting the United States.

Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin on Thursday dismissed reports in Japanese and South Korean media that the missile could be a KN-08, which is believed to be a long-range missile that if operable could hit the United States.

Kim told lawmakers at a hearing that the missile's range is considerable but not far enough to hit the U.S. mainland. He said he did not know the reasons behind the missile movement, saying it "could be for testing or drills."

Experts say North Korea has not demonstrated that it has missiles capable of long range or accuracy. Some suspect that long-range missiles unveiled by Pyongyang at a parade last year were actually mockups.