SEOUL: North Korea said Saturday it has test-fired a tactical ballistic missile equipped with a new “autonomous” navigation system in a bid to advance its weapons capabilities.

The North’s leader Kim Jong-un oversaw the weapons test on Friday, Yonhap news agency reported , citing the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). The report did not reveal further details, such as how many missiles were fired.

“The accuracy and reliability of the autonomous navigation system were verified through the test fire,“ the report said.

The South Korean military said Friday it detected the North’s firing of several short-range ballistic missiles from the eastern coastal city of Wonsan. The missiles flew about 300 kilometres and landed in the East Sea, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

It reported Shin Jong-woo, a senior researcher at the Korea Defense and Security Forum, said the latest launch would mark an increase in range for the North’s tactical guided weapons, which previously had been known to have a range of 100 to 110 kilometers.

Considering the flight distance of some 300 kilometers, the North may have tested the missile with major military facilities in South Korea in mind.

The direct distance between Pyongyang and the South’s Gyeryongdae military headquarters in Gyeryong is measured at around 330 kilometres, according to Yonhap.