The Associated Pres

HONOLULU (AP) - The latest U.S. missile defense test in Hawaii is expected to come as tensions continue with North Korea over that country's missile program.

A short-range ballistic missile slated to be fired late Thursday from the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai was to be shot down by a three-stage interceptor missile from the USS Hopper.

The test conducted by the Navy and the Department of Defense's Missile Defense Agency will mark the 23rd firing by ships equipped with the Aegis defense system.

On July 4, North Korea violated U.N. Security Council resolutions by sending seven ballistic missiles into waters off its east coast. There had been speculation North Korea would launch a missile toward Hawaii about 4,500 miles away to coincide with the Independence Day holiday.