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U.S. responds to North Korea missile tests

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The White House says it is still willing to engage with Pyongyang, despite recent missile tests

North Korea describes the new “long-range cruise missiles” it tested over the weekend as a “strategic weapon of great significance”.

North Korea state-run media claims the missiles give the country “another effective deterrence means” against “hostile forces”.

Analysts say that the North Koreans often use the term ‘strategic’ as a euphemism for nuclear-capable.

However it is unclear if the nation is able to develop warheads small enough to be carried on these missiles. 

A leading arms expert, Jeffrey Lewis, says an intermediate-range land-attack cruise missile is a pretty serious capability for North Korea.

According to state run media, the missiles flew 1500 kilometres, before hitting their targets and falling into the country’s territorial waters.

The tests took place just days after the reclusive nation celebrated the 73rd anniversary of its founding with a late night military parade.

Japan says it is “extremely concerned”

If the missiles are capable of flying 1500 kilometres, they would be able to hit targets in South Korea and most of Japan.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary says such missiles would pose a “serious threat to the peace and safety of Japan and its surrounding areas.”

The U.S. military has also condemned the tests, saying they pose a threat to not only North Korea’s neighbours but the international community.

The White House, though, says it’s still willing to engage when it comes to the critical issue of denuclearisation.

“Our position has not changed when it comes to North Korea, we remain prepared to engage.”

White House principal deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre 

Nuclear talks between the United States and North Korea have been stalled for two years.

The U.S. Special envoy for North Korea was already scheduled to hold three way talks with counterparts from Japan and South Korea this week.

There is little doubt about what will be top of the agenda.

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TikTok implements stricter guidelines on weight-loss drug promotion

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TikTok is tightening its regulations on influencers who promote weight-loss drugs like Ozempic.

With over 170 million users in the US, the app aims to prevent the spread of potentially harmful content related to rapid weight loss.

Starting in May, TikTok will prohibit influencers from posting “before-and-after” photos and restrict minors from accessing weight-loss content deemed risky. The crackdown extends to any content promoting drastic weight loss methods, aiming to combat the promotion of unrealistic body standards.

However, some influencers, like Dave Knapp and Kim Carlos, criticise the move, arguing it discriminates against those with health conditions. Others fear losing their income as TikTok takes down their content, prompting concerns about the platform’s future amid potential US bans.

As TikTok enforces stricter guidelines, influencers may seek alternative platforms to share weight-loss content. Despite the popularity of drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy, the crackdown reflects growing concerns about the impact of such promotions on user health.

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Game on with indie devs celebrated by Nintendo

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Nintendo Switch fans rejoice! The recent Indie World Showcase unveiled 17 new titles coming in 2024.

Including in the rundown is the adorable “Little Kitty, Big City” and explosive platformer “Anton Blast.” In other news, “Stellar Blade” confirms an uncensored release on PlayStation 5, Fallout’s TV adaptation gears up for Season 2, and Keanu Reeves joins the cast of Sonic 3 as Shadow. New releases this week include “Tales of Kenzera: Zau” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Arcade: Wrath of the Mutants,” while “Fallout 4” gets a next-gen update. With “Stellar Blade” topping the list, gamers have plenty to look forward to in the coming weeks.

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What are the major takeaways from day one of Trump’s trial?

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The first day of Donald Trump’s criminal hush money trial that the former president broke the law and corrupted the 2016 election, while his defence lawyer said he committed no crime.

On this episode of Ticker Today – Former President Donald Trump’s hush money trial is officially underway, President Joe Biden makes cannibal claims, TikTok US ban enters the next phase and Gen Z’s are dropping degrees and picking up tools to become blue-collar workers.

Ticker’s Ahron Young and Veronica Dudo discuss.

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