Asia: North Korea launches another missile


North Korea launches another missile

Sunday’s new missile comes after Thursday’s launch of the Hwasong-17, the most powerful missile in North Korea’s arsenal.


On Thursday, North Korea launched its most powerful missile, the Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile.


North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile on Sunday, its fourth show of force in a week, as Seoul and Washington held their largest joint military drills in five years, according to the South Korean military.

“Our military detected the launch of a short-range missile towards the East Sea at 11:05 a.m. (03:05 a.m. in Switzerland) from near the Dongchang-ri area in North Pyongan province (northwest),” the joint chief said. The staff refers to the Korean name for the Sea of ​​Japan. “Our military is fully prepared in close cooperation with the United States,” he added.

“Red Line”

For its part, the Japanese Foreign Ministry tweeted that a “potential ballistic missile (could) be from North Korea,” adding that the Japanese coast guard “appears to have already fallen.” Since Monday, Seoul has been holding its most important military maneuvers with Washington in five years to bolster their cooperation in the face of a growing threat from the North. Called “Freedom Shield”, they will last until March 23.

The drills infuriate Pyongyang, which sees it as a rehearsal for an invasion of its territory and continues to promise an “extreme” response. They are “approaching an unforgivable red line,” North Korea’s official KCNA agency said of them on Saturday.

Sunday’s launch comes after Pyongyang launched its Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the most powerful in its arsenal, in the presence of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and his daughter on Thursday, ahead of a visit to southern Japan. Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol.

“Pranic” military exercises

After years of cooling due to a historic dispute, the two neighbors have decided to resume language at the highest level and present a united front against North Korea. This is the second ICBM test conducted by Pyongyang this year. KCNA called it a response to South Korea and the United States’ “frenzied” military exercises.

The firing followed the firing of two short-range ballistic missiles on Tuesday and two strategic cruise missiles from the submarine on March 12. Experts have warned that North Korea is likely to use the maneuvers as a pretext to launch more missiles and possibly conduct a nuclear test, the seventh in its history and the first since 2017.

Last year, North Korea declared its nuclear power “irreplaceable” and Kim Jong-un called for an “exponential” increase in the country’s military arsenal, including tactical nuclear weapons. Earlier this month, the leader ordered the military to step up its own maneuvers for “real war”.

(AFP)Show comments

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