N.Korea media confirms hypersonic missile test

A North Korean newspaper says the country carried out its first test-launch of a newly developed hypersonic missile on Tuesday morning.

The ruling Workers' Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun on Wednesday reported that a Hwasong-8 missile was launched in the northern province of Jagang. It carries an image of a missile ascending while trailing orange flame.

The report said the party's senior official Pak Jong Chon observed the launch. Pak is a close aide to leader Kim Jong Un.

The report said defense scientists have confirmed the navigational control and stability of the missile.

It added that they verified technical specifications, such as the guiding maneuverability and the flight characteristics of the detached gliding warhead.

The report said the missile met all required specifications and stressed its strategic significance to reinforce the country's defense capabilities.

Japan's defense white paper describes a hypersonic missile as a weapon that flies at the speed of more than Mach 5, which is five times the speed of sound.

Experts say the United States, China and Russia have been developing hypersonic missiles. North Korea commented on the development of the weapon in January.