NORTH KOREA has tested two short-range ballistic missiles.
Pyongyang was expected to halt missile tests after joint exercises between the US and South Korea came to an end. The projectiles were fired into the Sea of Japan. Military officials in Seoul have released a statement: “North Korea launched unidentified projectiles twice this morning from Sunduk area, south of Hamkyeng province to the East Sea Saturday.”
The ‘East Sea’ is a Korean term for what the international community calls the Sea of Japan.
The statement added: “Our military is closely monitoring the situation in case of additional launches while maintaining a readiness posture.”
The office of South Korea’s president has confirmed it will hold an emergency meeting to discuss the launches.
The launch comes a day after Seoul pulled out of an intelligence sharing pact with Japan, questioning whether it was still in the national interest.
Japan’s Coast Guard has confirmed it detected the launch.
A senior official in the US administration said: “We are aware of reports of a missile launch from North Korea, and continue to monitor the situation. We are consulting closely with our Japanese and South Korean allies.”
This is Pyongyang’s seventh missile launch since testing resumed in July.
The recommencing occurred after talks between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump stalled in May.
It is not yet clear what the distance and maximum altitude of the missile was.
Neither is it clear where exactly it landed but it is thought to not be in Japanese territorial waters.
The Korean People’s Army has 950,000 active personnel, with a further 200,000 in reserve
The active figure is 5th in the world behind China, India, the US and Russia.