Seoul North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles at sea off the east coast on Saturday. According to the South Korean military this is the fourth launch within a week. The two missiles were launched north of the North Korean capital Pyongyang, the South Korean general staff said in a statement.
The Japanese Coast Guard also reported at least two suspected ballistic missile tests. The missiles flew 400 and 350 kilometers and reached an altitude of 50 kilometers, said Japanese Defense Minister Toshiro Ino.
The missile launch came after naval forces of South Korea, the United States and Japan held trilateral anti-submarine exercises on Friday for the first time in five years.
North Korea has been subject to UN sanctions since 2006, which the Security Council has steadily and unanimously tightened over the years. North Korea is to be prevented from financing its nuclear weapons and missile programs. However, North Korea’s ruler Kim Jong Un is not going to be deterred from his course, as he sees his country threatened by the United States.
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North Korea recently passed a new nuclear weapons law that provides for the right to carry out a nuclear first strike in self-defense. The status as a nuclear power was also “irreversibly” anchored in it.