North Korea Flexes Military Might With Ballistic Missiles- According to South Korea’s military, North Korea launched two ballistic missiles off its east coast on Monday, as the powerful sister of leader Kim Jong Un threatened to convert the Pacific into a “firing range” and raise tensions in the area.
The Japan Coast Guard said that shortly after 2200 GMT, North Korea fired three possible ballistic missile-like projectiles, all intercepted minutes later. According to national broadcaster NHK, all three came outside Japan’s EEZ.
The launch took place just two days after North Korea launched an ICBM into the ocean off the west coast of Japan in what it described as a “sudden launching drill.”
After the United States conducted bilateral joint air exercises with South Korea and Japan on Sunday in response to the North’s ICBM launch, Kim Yo Jong, sister of North Korean leader Kim, issued a statement and cautioned against increasing the presence of US strategic assets on the Korean peninsula.
She stated, “We are carefully analysing the impact it would have on the security of our state. The action style of the US military will determine how frequently we use the Pacific as a firing range. In response to criticism that the “sudden” missile launch, which followed a command from leader Kim, took place nine hours later than anticipated, she also disputed experts’ assessments of its missile capabilities. She claimed that South Korea didn’t even have any reconnaissance aircraft flying at the launch.
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They will argue that they were monitoring with ‘tight collaboration between intelligence authorities of South Korea and the US’ to explain why their scout planes weren’t flying at the time, she predicted.
According to Kim Yo Jong, the North possesses “sufficient” missile technology and capacity, who added that the country “now will focus on boosting the quantity of their force.”
North Korea slammed the U.S. and South Korea on Sunday a day after launching an ICBM.
State media claimed the short notice test was for a Hwasong-15, being a warning to Washington and Seoul against perceived "hostility." https://t.co/iGAyIW2DjF
— NK NEWS (@nknewsorg) February 20, 2023
To counter the North’s growing nuclear and missile threat, Pyongyang warned a “unprecedentedly persistent, forceful” response as South Korea and the US prepared for their annual military drills. Monday’s missile launch is the North’s third significant weapons test this year.
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