China calls for political settlement of Korean Peninsula issue
Updated 19:49, 19-Oct-2021

China said it is aware of the reports of Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s ballistic missile firing, hoping that relevant parties will remain restrained and jointly promote the political settlement of the Korean Peninsula issue, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Tuesday.

Noting the current situation on the Korean Peninsula has reached a key stage, Wang voiced the hope that relevant parties will bear in mind the larger picture while maintaining peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula. 

He also called for adhering to the right direction of dialogue and consultation, following the "dual-track" approach, and taking phased and synchronized actions to jointly promote the political solution of the Peninsula issue. 

South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) Tuesday said in a statement that the South Korean military detected one short-range ballistic missile, which the DPRK launched at about 10:17 a.m. local time (0117 GMT) from the eastern coast of Sinpo, South Hamgyong province in eastern DPRK. 

The JCS noted that the missile was estimated to be a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), saying the intelligence authorities of South Korea and the United States were analyzing further details on the missile. 

If confirmed it would mark the first submarine-launched ballistic missile test launch by the DPRK in about two years. In October 2019, the DPRK said it succeeded in test-firing a new type of SLBM, known as Pukguksong-3. 

Under the United Nations Security Council resolution, Pyongyang is banned from testing any ballistic missile technology. 

The DPRK staged several missile tests in September amid deadlocked denuclearization talks with the United States. 

It tested its newly-developed hypersonic missile Hwasong-8 on September 28, after launching two ballistic missiles on September 15. It also tested its newly-developed anti-aircraft missile on September 30. 

Pyongyang also test-fired cruise missiles into the western waters on January 22 and March 21, before testing ballistic missiles into the eastern waters on March 25. It also test-launched long-range cruise missiles on September 11-12. 

On September 15, South Korea said it successfully test-fired a homegrown SLBM which was launched underwater from a domestically-developed 3,000-tonne submarine. 

(With input from Xinhua)

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