N. Korea Fires 2 Ballistic Missiles toward Sea of Japan


Seoul/Tokyo, March 14 (Jiji Press)--North Korea on Tuesday fired two short-range ballistic missiles toward the Sea of Japan from South Hwanghae Province in the southwestern part of the country, the South Korean military said.

The missiles were launched between around 7:41 a.m. (10:41 p.m. Monday GMT) and 7:51 a.m., according to the military. The move was apparently for demonstrating the reclusive country's frustration at the Freedom Shield joint exercises between the United States and South Korea, which started Monday and are slated to run until March 23.

At a press conference in Tokyo on Tuesday, Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada said that the missiles have not been confirmed to have flown to Japanese territory or the Japanese exclusive economic zone. There have been no reports on damage to ships or aircraft.

The missiles traveled about 620 kilometers before falling into the Sea of Japan, according to the South Korean military. The launches clearly violated related U.N. Security Council resolutions, the military said, adding that South Korea and the United States remain alert for possible additional provocations by the North and maintain a decisive stance while continuing the Freedom Shield exercises as scheduled.

The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command criticized Tuesday's launches for destabilizing the regional situation.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press