Seoul says the reported launch poses a “serious threat” to regional and world peace
North Korea launched a suspected ballistic missile from Sunan Airport in Pyongyang on Wednesday, South Korea and Japan have said.
The South’s Joint Chief of Staff (JCS) said the missile traveled 470 km (292 miles) toward the Sea of Japan. The launch is “poses a serious threat to the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and the international community and is clearly in violation of UN Security Council resolutions,” according to the JCS.
“Our military monitors and monitors related movements to prepare for the possibility of an additional launch, and maintains a full readiness position,” the Korean military told reporters.
The JCS added that it is monitoring the situation for any additional launches. According to South Korean media outlets, JCS Chairman General Won In-choul held a video conference regarding the alleged missile test with United States Armed Forces Korea (USFK) Commander General Paul LaCamera.
Japan’s defense ministry also said it had detected the missile launch.
“North Korea’s recent actions, including frequent missile launches, cannot be tolerated,” he said. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida commented on the matter during a trip to Rome. He added that the tests pose a threat to the security of the region.
Pyongyang has not confirmed the reports of what is said to be the 14th such test since the beginning of the year.
Last month, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un personally oversaw the firing of a “new type tactical guided weapon.” At a military parade in late April, he pledged to accelerate the development of nuclear weapons and use them if Pyongyang’s “fundamental interests” are violated.
The latest suspected launch comes just a week before the inauguration of South Korean President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol, who is known for his tough stance on the North.
In 2018 and 2019, then-U.S. President Donald Trump and Kim held face-to-face talks about denuclearization, though discussions eventually stalled.
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