North Korea fires four ballistic missiles as tensions with south grow

 (Independent)
(Independent)

North Korea fired four short-range ballistic missiles into the sea on Saturday morning, said South Korean military.

Kim Jong-un’s regime has launched a series of missiles this week, including a possible failed intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), drawing condemnation from Washington, Seoul and Tokyo.

The latest missiles flew about 130 kms 80 miles with altitude of about 12 miles and landed in the western sea, South Korea said.

The missile launches raised speculation North Korea could be readying for the resumption of nuclear testing for the first time since 2017.

Pyongyang launched a suspected new type of banned intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) among three missile tests on Thursday, forcing Japan to issue evacuation alerts and halt trains.

The US and South Korea have extended military exercises in response to the launches, with the US Air Force reportedly planning to deploy B-1B bombers on Saturday afternoon.

South Korea‘s Defense Ministry said at least one B-1B bomber will participate on what is scheduled to be the last day of the joint air force exercise.

The “Vigilant Storm” exercise, which has involved about 240 warplanes, including advanced F-35 fighter jets from both countries, has triggered an angry reaction from North Korea.

North Korea‘s Foreign Ministry late Friday described those military actions as an appropriate response to Vigilant Storm, which it called a display of US “military confrontation hysteria.” It said North Korea will respond with the “toughest counteraction” to any attempts by “hostile forces” to infringe on its sovereignty or security interests.

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