North Korean missile can carry 'heavy nuclear warhead'

"This was close to home for Russian Federation".

North Korea's ambassador to China says that Pyongyang's test-firing of a ballistic missile over the weekend is part of the country's efforts to develop ways to defend itself against hostile aggression overseas.

Amid condemnation in Seoul, Tokyo, Washington and Moscow, a jubilant North Korean leader Kim Jong Un promised more nuclear and missile tests and warned that his country's weapons could strike the US mainland and Pacific holdings.

Pyongyang has carried out two atomic tests and dozens of missile launches since the beginning of previous year in its quest to develop a missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to the continental United States.

Washington and Tokyo called for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council, which was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

"As South Korea's diplomatic situation matures, North Korea should also show a more mature attitude, not a childish one, and contribute to (establishing a better) diplomatic relationship", said Jin Hyo-seon, 33, a painter.

"The president said we are leaving open the possibility of dialogue with North Korea, but we should sternly deal with a provocation to prevent North Korea from miscalculating", the president's spokesman, Yoon Young-chan, told reporters.

"North Korea has been a flagrant menace for far too long", a statement released over the weekend said. No date has been set, but a US delegation planned to meet with South Korean officials Monday in Seoul to lay the groundwork for the meeting, according to the Yonhap news agency. And Japanese Defense Minister Tomomi Inada suggested that it might be a new type of missile altogether, noting that it reached an altitude of 2,000 km (1,240 miles) and remained in the air for 30 minutes.

Under UN resolutions, North Korea is barred from developing nuclear and missile technology.

Dhaka had urged Pyongyang to refrain from any activity that can potentially escalate tension in the region and beyond.

China is under pressure to take stronger measures to persuade its communist ally to abandon its nuclear ambitions.

The Security Council has approved six increasingly tougher sanctions resolutions following its nuclear and missile tests.

"The test-fire aimed at verifying the tactical and technological specifications of the newly-developed ballistic rocket capable of carrying a large-size heavy nuclear warhead", the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), North Korea's official mouthpiece, reported in English.

North Korea launched a ballistic missile early Sunday from the northwestern part of the country. That would put it in reach of the US territory of Guam.

The US said the missile was sacked from Kusong, a city which plays home to much of North Korea's military activity, including munitions factories and uranium mines.

Kim Jong Un has stepped up the pace of the weapons program since taking over in 2011 after his father, Kim Jong Il, died of a heart attack.

It says the "era of strategic patience" with North Korea is over.

A reliable missile must endure at least 10 successful test launches, according to Professor Chae Yeon-seok at South Korea's University of Science & Technology.

The North has made no secret of its quest to develop a missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to the continental United States - something President Donald Trump has vowed "won't happen".

Outsiders express more skepticism about North Korea's nuclear warhead claims.