By Michael Hernandez
WASHINGTON (AA) - The US urged North Korea to halt "provocations" after a recent test launch was determined by regional countries to be an advanced hypersonic missile.
"It is, we think, incumbent on the DPRK to cease these provocations, to demonstrate that they too are interested in, and serious about, this dialogue, and if they are they will find a willing counterpart in the United States, and our allies, as well to engage in this dialogue," State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters, using an acronym to refer to North Korea by its formal name.
Price maintained that the US places no preconditions on the resumption of negotiations with the North.
Tuesday's ballistic missile launch was the second of what the North said are newly-developed hypersonic missiles. South Korea also said it appears the launch was of a hypersonic missile hitting speeds of more than Mach 10, or about 7,700 mph (12,400 kph).
Following the launch, South Korea expressed strong regret at the development and called on Pyongyang to respond to its call for dialogue, according to the South's Yonhap news agency.
"North Korea should choose cooperation for peace over acts that go against efforts to build peace on the Korean Peninsula, such as the latest missile launches, at this critical moment to stabilize the political situation surrounding the peninsula," Yonhap quoted a South Korean Unification Ministry official.
In October, North Korea for the first time confirmed it developed a hypersonic missile and tested it.
Hypersonic missiles usually fly five times the speed of sound, or 6,125 kilometers per hour (3,806 miles per hour), giving little time to respond and posing questions about the adequacy of existing missile defense systems.