North Korea may launch a long-range ballistic missile towards Hawaii on American Independence Day, according to Japanese intelligence officials.
The missile, believed to be a Taepodong-2 with a range of up to 4,000 miles, would be launched in early July from the Dongchang-ni site on the north-western coast of the secretive country.
Intelligence analysts do not believe the device would be capable of hitting Hawaii’s main islands, which are 4,500 miles from North Korea.
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It was announced today that the U.S. has deployed anti-missile defences around Hawaii in response to the threat.
North Korea test-fired a similar long-range missile on July 4 three years ago, but it failed seconds after liftoff.
U.S. Defence Secretary Robert Gates said the additional defences around Hawaii consist of a ground-based mobile missile system and a radar system nearby.
Together they could shoot an incoming missile in mid air.