Beijing conducts successful missile defence test
Concern over a potential conflict with nuclear-armed North Korea is growing following a series of bellicose statements between Washington and Pyongyang
China said on Tuesday it successfully conducted a test of a ground-based missile defence system amid rising tensions in the Korean peninsula.
Concern over a potential conflict with nuclear-armed North Korea is growing following a series of bellicose statements between Washington and Pyongyang.
Monday's test of the mid-range missile system "achieved its anticipated goal", according to a brief statement by the Chinese defence ministry.
"This test was defensive. It does not target any country," it said.
The US has deployed a missile defence system, known as Thaad, in South Korea to guard against threats from North Korea, despite objections from Beijing, which considers the installation a threat to its own security.
Secretary of state Rex Tillerson and defence secretary Jim Mattis have been pushing a diplomatic strategy to convince North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to come to the table and negotiate away his nuclear weapons.
But other senior figures in the Trump Administration have reportedly endorsed the idea of a "bloody nose" strike to damage Mr Kim's nuclear sector and show the United Staes means business, hopefully without provoking a wider war.
US President Donald Trump's pick for ambassador to South Korea, Victor Cha, was dropped after refusing to endorse the idea, according to a recent article in the Washington Post.
During last week's State of the Union address, Mr Trump warned Pyongyang's weapons programme "could very soon threaten our homeland".
Updated: February 6, 2018 11:08 AM