SEOUL, South Korea - North Korea test-fired a missile into the sea on Monday in what was seen as an attempt to raise tension further in the standoff over its nuclear programmes and pressure the United States into negotiations.
The widely anticipated launch from a base on North Korea's east coast fit a recent pattern of unusual military maneuvers, including the North's interception a week ago of a U.S. reconnaissance plane.
"This is another show of North Korean brinkmanship," said Yoon Dong-min, an expert at the state-funded Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security in Seoul.
"They are trying to raise the stakes in the nuclear standoff and trying to get the upper hand ahead of possible talks with the United States," Yoon said.
North Korea wants a non-aggression treaty and economic aid from the United States, but Washington says the U.N. Security Council should handle the nuclear problem. Source.