North Korea Launches Another Ballistic Missile, Seoul Says
North Korea launched another ballistic missile toward its eastern waters on Thursday, the South Korean military said, hours after the north threatened to launch “tougher” military responses to the US Strengthening its security commitment to its allies South Korea and Japan.
The launch of a short-range ballistic missile took place Thursday at 10:48 a.m. local time into the East Sea from the North Korean city of Wonsan, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff reported. The missile flew a distance of about 240 kilometers at an altitude of 47 kilometers and at a speed of Mach 4, the South Korean military estimated.
The US Indo-Pacific Command said in a statement that it was “aware” of the launch and was “in close consultation with our allies and partners.” The agency added that it determined the launch “poses no immediate threat to US personnel or territories, or to our allies.”
Earlier Thursday, North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son Hue warned that a recent summit deal between the US, South Korea and Japan over the north would make tensions on the Korean peninsula “more unpredictable”.
Choe’s statement was North Korea’s first official response to President Biden’s trilateral summit with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts in Cambodia on Sunday. In their joint statement, the three leaders strongly condemned North Korea’s recent missile tests and agreed to work together to strengthen deterrence, while Biden reiterated US commitments to provide South Korea and Japan with a full range of capabilities, including his nuclear weapons to defend.
Choe said the US-South Korea-Japan summit will bring the situation on the Korean peninsula to a “more unpredictable phase”.
“The more perceptive the US is to the ‘enhanced offer of enhanced deterrence’ to its allies, and the more it intensifies provocative and bluffing military activities on the Korean peninsula and in the region, the more violent (North Korea’s) military counteraction will be direct its relationship thereto,” Choe said, “It will pose a more serious, realistic and inevitable threat to the US and its vassal forces.”
Choe did not say what steps North Korea might take, but said, “The US will be aware that they are playing, which they will certainly regret.”
North Korea has steadfastly maintained it recent weapon tests Activities are legitimate military countermeasures to so-called military exercises between US and South Korean forces, which they see as a practice to conduct attacks on the North.
US and South Korean officials in late October confirmed to CBS News that North Korea is preparing to test a nuclear weapon soon, which would be its first nuclear test since 2017.
And earlier this month North Korea fired Dozens of rockets and fighter jets flew towards the sea – Raising evacuation alerts in some South Korean and Japanese areas – in protest at massive US-South Korean air force exercises, which the North sees as an invasion rehearsal.
On November 7th North Korea released a statement He said his barrage of missile tests was drills to “mercilessly” hit key South Korean and US targets such as air bases and operations command systems.