North Korea has fired two ballistic missiles into the sea off its east coast, South Korea said on Wednesday (13/9). This latest launch came while North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was in Russia for talks with President Vladimir Putin.
The South Korean military said it detected two short-range ballistic missiles launched from the Sunan area into the East Sea at around 11.43 to 11.53 local time on Wednesday (13/9) morning.
“Our military will closely monitor North Korean activities in preparation for further provocations, through close cooperation with the United States, while maintaining a strong readiness posture based on the ability to respond to any provocations,” South Korea’s National Security Council said.
South Korea Koreas Tensions
The council added that North Korea’s repeated missile launches were “significant provocations detrimental to peace and prosperity” on the Korean peninsula and the international community.
The launch was the first while Kim was on a rare trip abroad.
The launch is the latest in a series of missile tests and military exercises carried out by North Korea in recent weeks. Pyongyang launched several cruise missiles towards the Yellow Sea on September 2, following the launch of two short-range ballistic missiles from the Sunan area towards waters east of the Korean peninsula on August 30.
In Tokyo, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary, Hirokazu Matsuno, told reporters at a news conference that Japan had lodged an official protest with North Korea through the Japanese embassy in Beijing.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also instructed relevant ministries to gather information and ensure the safety of planes and ships.
A UN Security Council resolution prohibits all North Korean ballistic missile and nuclear weapons activities. Officials in Seoul and Tokyo said they strongly condemned Pyongyang’s missile launch and urged North Korea to stop it immediately. (lt/ab)