North Korea apparently failed with an attempted missile launch Tuesday, the latest in a series of setbacks for a ballistic weapons programme that aspires to threaten the US mainland. South Korea’s defence ministry detected the dawn launch effort, which Japan condemned as an unacceptable and “provocative” act.

The ministry declined to speculate on the missile type, but military sources cited by local media said it was a powerful, medium-range “Musudan” that has already undergone three failed launches this year. UN resolutions ban North Korea from any use of ballistic missile technology, although it regularly fires short-range missiles into the sea off its east coast. FULL REPORT