State broadcaster Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported that North Korea had launched a new medium-range strategic ballistic missile, in a test aimed at checking the attitude control system of the missile stage that can carry a nuclear warhead at the time of atmospheric re-entry.

South Korean military officials say North Korea fired a ballistic missile into its eastern sea early on February 12, with Seoul and the USA military saying they were assessing the launch.

North Korea said on Monday the launch was a successful test of a new nuclear-capable, intermediate-range ballistic missile called the Pukguksong-2.

Calls have been made for an urgent meeting of the United Nations Security Council after North Korea launched a ballistic missile on Sunday.

The reports of the launch came as Mr Trump was hosting Mr Abe and just days before the North is to mark the birthday of leader Kim Jong Un's late father, Kim Jong Il.

Seoul condemned the missile launch, saying it was an attempt to gain leverage by showing off its nuclear and missile capabilities after recent statements by Trump indicating he will take a hard line toward the country.

"During the (dinner summit) meeting that I had with President Trump, he assured me that the United States will always with Japan 100 percent and to demonstrate his determination as well as commitment he is now here with me at this joint press conference" Abe said.

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Labour's shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer praised the move, which he described as a " huge and very important concession ". He says that the vote will cover Britain's withdrawal arrangements and its future relationship with the EU.

"Obviously, North Korea is a big, big problem and we will deal with that very strongly", Trump said. Still, some say North Korea may have used the launch to test some technology it will need for an ICBM.

It flew about 500 km and landed in waters off the DPRK's east coast. This news story is related to Latest/185786-Korea-fires-ballistic-missile-Seoul-defence-ministry/ - breaking news, latest news, pakistan ne.

North Korea conducted two nuclear tests and a number of rocket launches past year in ongoing efforts to apparently expand its nuclear weapons and missile programs.

The letter was sent Friday prior to North Korea's latest missile test, but released Sunday after the test.

Some observers have suggested that Trump's unorthodox leadership style may allow him to more effectively deal with North Korea's Kim Jong-un than past presidents have been able to.

China, which Mr Trump has accused of neglecting to rein in North Korea, is yet to respond.

Trump has vowed to prevent North Korea from developing the capability to strike the US with a missile, though the administration hasn't yet announced a detailed North Korea policy. Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said China opposed the launch.