North Korea fired a ballistic missile for the second day in a row on Friday, the South Korean military said. According to Seoul, it may be a long-range intercontinental missile, a type of weapon that can travel a very great distance. The missile appears to have come down in the so-called Japanese economic zone (EEZ), Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida reports. He calls the latest launch “absolutely unacceptable”.
According to the Japanese Ministry of Defense, the missile was launched from the west coast of the Korean peninsula at around 10:14 a.m. local time (02:14 a.m. Dutch time) and fired in an easterly direction. Shortly after launch, the Japanese Coast Guard predicted that the missile would probably land more than 200 kilometers west of the northernmost Japanese island of Hokkaido.
This is the latest in a record series of launches in recent weeks. North Korea has been firing missiles at an unusually high frequency since late September.
On Thursday, the regime also launched a ballistic missile, which ended up in the Sea of Japan. The launch followed North Korea’s threat to intensify military action if the United States continues to hold exercises in the region. The North Korean foreign minister also said that the summit recently held between the US, South Korea and Japan has made the situation “even more unpredictable”.
Minister Choe Son-hui said in a statement to state news agency KCNA that the military exercises of the three countries have not contained North Korea’s activities, but have created a new security crisis.
According to the minister, if the activities are continued, ‘more violent counter-actions’ will follow. “The United States needs to realize that this is a gamble they will certainly regret.”
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