North Korea conducts new 'long-range missile test' ramping up tensions ahead of 'Christmas gift' deadline for US

Latest provocation comes just weeks before deadline for veiled threat by Kim regime.

North Korea says it has conducted a new test at its missile launch site, ramping up international tensions just weeks before its promised “Christmas gift” for the United States. Through its state news agency, the regime announced it had completed another “crucial test” at its long-range rocket facility in Sohae. It is not clear what exactly was tested, but experts believe North Korea is trying to develop the capacity for rockets which could carry nuclear payloads as far as the US. A senior North Korean military leader said recent test aimed to subdue nuclear threats from the US, state media reported on Saturday. Chief of the General Staff Pak Jong Chon warned that "hostile forces", including America, should not provoke his nation if they wanted to see a peaceful New Year.

Earlier this month, Kim Jong-un’s administration issued a veiled threat about Christmas “gifts”, demanding the Americans offer substantial sanctions relief by 31 December. If not, the country will walk away from denuclearization talks. “The dialogue touted by the US is, in essence, nothing but a foolish trick hatched to keep the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea bound to dialogue,” a senior official said. “What is left to be done now is the US option and it is entirely up to the US what Christmas gift it will select to get.”
North Korea is yet another abject foreign policy failure for Donald Trump.

The Kim government is also threatening the US. Expected after the world saw Turkey's Erdogan threaten the US in Syria and Trumps response was to run and desert an ally.