North Korea's latest missile launch into Japanese-claimed waters was carried out under Kim Jong Un's watchful eye, per the country's state news agency, and the leader has promised an even larger "gift" for the US is forthcoming. In what Reuters refers to as an "unprecedented pace," North Korea continues to conduct tests of its ballistic missiles—it has launched three in just as many weeks and test-fired 12 this year—despite warnings from the global community. Kim "expressed the conviction that [North Korea] would make a greater leap forward in this spirit to send a bigger 'gift package' to the Yankees," KCNA said. The Japan Times calls the "gift package" a "veiled reference to a long-range missile capable of striking the continental US."
Monday's Scud-class missile came souped up with a sophisticated "automated pre-launch sequence," and while Kim said his nation's weaponry is on course to become more advanced and more powerful, Reuters notes it's hard to independently confirm such claims. President Trump responded to the launch by tweeting about the North's "great disrespect" for neighboring China, adding that China "is trying hard!" China's head diplomat, Yang Jiechi, did indeed meet with Shotaro Yachi, Japan's national security adviser, on Monday, with Yachi noting to Yang that their two countries have to team up to pressure North Korea to heed UN resolutions, per a statement from Japan's foreign ministry. Reuters notes the statement from China's foreign ministry on the meeting didn't reference North Korea. (Read more North Korea stories.)