North Korea launched a short-range ballistic missile into eastern waters on Sunday, provoking a weapons test as a US aircraft carrier visited South Korea for joint military exercises in response to North Korea’s growing nuclear threat. extended the continuum.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the missile, launched from the western inland town of Daecheon, traveled 600 kilometers (370 miles) cross-country at a maximum altitude of 60 kilometers (37 miles) before landing in waters off North Korea’s east coast. said to have flown
South Korea’s presidential office said National Security Director Kim Sung-han had convened an emergency national security meeting, where members condemned the launch as a clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions and said North Korea was escalating tensions in the region. said to have denounced.
The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command said the launch poses no “immediate threat to U.S. personnel or territory, or to allies,” but nonetheless emphasized the destabilizing impact of North Korea’s illegal nuclear and missile programs.
The launch came as the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan and its strike group arrived in South Korea for joint military exercises between the two countries aimed at demonstrating their strength against the growing North Korean threat.
South Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Kim Gang, the special envoy for nuclear affairs, held phone calls with US President Sung Kim’s special representative for North Korea Joe Biden and Takehiro Funakoshi, director-general of Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Asia and Oceania, on trilateral cooperation. said he had an interview. about the North Korean threat.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said in a statement that Tokyo was “doing its utmost” to gather information on North Korean launches and to confirm the safety of ships and aircraft, but the extent of damage There was no immediate report.
The North Korean threat is also expected to be high on the agenda when US Vice President Kamala Harris visits South Korea next week after attending the state funeral in Tokyo of the assassinated former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
North Korea has tested more than 30 ballistic weapons, including its first intercontinental ballistic missile since 2017, and will dial up its testing activities to a record pace in 2022. Speeds up weapon development.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has suspended nuclear tests with repeated threats to actively use nuclear weapons if North Korea is threatened, and threatens the security of rival South Korea armed with conventional weapons. It raises security concerns.
Flight details released by the Seoul military suggest North Korea may have tested a nuclear-capable short-range weapon modeled after Russia’s Iskandar missile. missile defense.
Kim Dong-yeob, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul, said it was notable that the missile flew 600 kilometers (370 miles) from the Taecheon launch site — the distance to the southern South Korean port of Busan, where Reagan arrived on Friday. almost the same as
The Iskandar-like missile is part of a growing arsenal of short-range solid-fuel systems North Korea has been developing since 2019. Use small battlefield nuclear weapons and use them aggressively during conflict to blunt the stronger conventional forces of South Korea and the United States. About 28,500 troops are stationed in South Korea.
North Korea has so far rejected calls from the United States and South Korea to return to nuclear diplomacy, but over disagreements in exchanging US-led sanctions relief and North Korea’s disarmament measures. It has been stagnant since 2019.
USS Reagan’s arrival in South Korea comes after Kim told a rubber stamp assembly in Pyongyang earlier this month that he would never give up the nuclear weapons and missiles he needs to counter what he perceives as U.S. hostility. rice field.
Chairman Kim’s speech saw North Korea’s parliamentarians pass a law stating its status as a nuclear-weapon state and authorizing the first use of nuclear weapons in a wide range of scenarios in which the state or its leadership is threatened, It was done when you clarified the escalating nuclear doctrine.
South Korea’s Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup told U.S. and South Korean forces aboard the Reagan on Saturday that the deployment of U.S. strategic assets to the region demonstrates America’s unwavering commitment to defending South Korea. said. According to his minister’s statement, he said that if North Korea tried to use nuclear weapons, it would face an overwhelming response.
South Korean officials said they had detected signs that North Korea was preparing to test a missile system designed to be launched from a submarine, so Sunday’s tests were followed by a more provocative weapons demonstration. South Korea’s president Yoon Seok-yeol’s office said on Saturday it had been briefed on such a development before returning home from a visit to Canada.
On Wednesday, North Korea-focused website 38 North said an analysis of commercial satellite imagery showed multiple barges and barges gathered at the eastern port of Sinpo, where North Korea has a major shipyard to build submarines. Said other ships were shown. The report said North Korea may be preparing to launch a new submarine capable of launching ballistic missiles.
North Korea has insisted on being able to launch nuclear missiles from its submarines. In theory, such a weapon would enhance North Korea’s deterrence by ensuring retaliation after absorbing a nuclear attack on the ground.
Ballistic-missile submarines also add a new maritime threat to North Korea’s growing collection of land-vehicle-launched solid-fuel weapons being developed with the express purpose of overwhelming South Korean and Japanese missile defense systems. .
Still, experts say it will take a significant amount of time, resources and major technological improvements for a heavily sanctioned country to build at least a few submarines that can sail quietly on the sea and carry out attacks reliably. said it would be needed.
Associated Press writer Yuri Kageyama contributed from Tokyo.
Kim Tong-hyun, Associated Press
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South Korea says North Korea launched missile into sea – Kelowna Capital News
Source link South Korea says North Korea launched missile into sea – Kelowna Capital News