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SEOUL, South Korea – 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.