North Korea fired missiles southwards again on Wednesday. For the first time, a missile landed just 60 kilometers off the South Korean coast. The reactions from Seoul and Washington came promptly.
The US has condemned the alleged launch of an ICBM by North Korea. The shooting down was a “clear violation of several UN Security Council resolutions,” said US State Department spokesman Ned Price on Wednesday (local time). The action shows the danger North Korea’s illegal WMD and ballistic missile programs pose to its neighbors and the region, as well as to international peace and security.
Together with the international community, the United States called on North Korea to refrain from further provocations and to engage in dialogue, it said. The US commitment to the defense of South Korea and Japan remains “iron”.
According to the South Korean military, North Korea may have also fired an ICBM towards the open sea during new missile tests. North Korea shot down at least three ballistic missiles on Thursday morning (local time), one of which appeared to be a long-range missile, the South Korean Armed Forces General Staff said. All three were flying towards the Sea of Japan (Korean: East Sea).
Despite international criticism, the self-declared nuclear power North Korea has been carrying out rocket tests at an unusually high frequency since the end of September. According to South Korean information, the country had only fired more than 20 rockets on the east and west coasts on Wednesday.