via BBC News

The US has delayed an intercontinental ballistic missile test scheduled for next week, defence officials say.

The Minuteman 3 test was put off over concerns it could be misinterpreted by North Korea, amid fears of a conflict.

It could be postponed until May, in what correspondents say will be portrayed by Pyongyang as a victory.

North Korea has issued a series of unusually strong threats since it was sanctioned by the UN in March for carrying out a third nuclear test.

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It has threatened nuclear strikes on the US, formally declared war on the South, and pledged to reopen a nuclear reactor in defiance of UN Security Council resolutions.

A Pentagon official said the US wanted to “avoid any misperception or miscalculation” that might result from the test.

US and South Korean officials have sought to play down fears of a conflict on the Korean peninsula in recent days.

The BBC’s John Sudworth in Seoul says Pyongyang will likely use the delay to its advantage in propaganda, and say the US has been forced to climb down in the face of resilience from the North Korean army.

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Article courtesy bbc.co.uk

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