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N.Korea Joins Race for New Hypersonic Missile As S. Korea, U.S and S. Korea, China Discuss N. Korea Updated: 2021-09-29 17:12:53 KST

Our in-depth tonight focuses on North Korea's testing of a hypersonic missile and what this means for the peninsula. To talk us through the issue, we have our North Korea expert Dr. GO Myong-hyun in the studio with us. Thanks for joining us.

North Korea claimed that it successfully tested a hypersonic missile on Tuesday. The latest launch marks the country's third missile test this month, following a new type of cruise missile, as a well as a new train-launched ballistic missile system. Why is the North continuing to test its weapons system consecutively these days?

What does the development of this hypersonic missile mean? How threatening is this weapon? And if it becomes much harder for missile defense systems to intercept, what kind of threat will this pose for Korea and the region?

Most of them are targeted toward South Korea, Japan and Guam. Why is North Korea showing such aggression?

Recently, North Korea made confusing statements about South Korea both through Kim Yo-jong, the North Korean leader's sister, and through top diplomats including the N.K. Ambassador to the U.N. Kim Yo-jong on Saturday said Pyongyang will take steps to improve relations with Seoul while its Ambassador to the U.N. said North Korea has right to test weapons given U.S.'s hostile policies. What's their intention behind this capricious stance?

The timing of North Korea's firing of missiles yesterday came only days after President Moon Jae-in made a speech at the U.N. about officially ending the Korean War. While the South Korean President is making moves to continue peace talks, the North seems uninterested in ameliorating relations. Rather, they're resorting to provoking the South with weapons. Are they trying to strengthen their military power or are they just trying to leverage this as a strategic card ahead of possible negotiations?

It seems like the Moon administration will continue to push forth with the "End of War" pursuit. How likely is it that North Korea will show up for two-party talks with South Korea in Beijing during the Olympics next year?

The United States hasn't responded to North Korea's aggression as of now. It has been calling for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons, and Pyongyang's relationship with the Biden administration is fraught with tension. While sanctions are imposed on North Korea, how likely is it for North Korea to engage in talks with the U.S.?

That was Dr. GO Myong-hyun from the Asan Institute for Policy Studies. Thanks for your insights.

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