South Korea claimed their neighboring country launched two short-range ballistic missiles in the sea on Friday. This launch was part of North Korea’s ballistic weapons program.
The launch of weapons was detected by South Korea’s military, and according to them, it took place near the eastern coast of North Korea, in the Tongchon area. The Joint Chiefs of Staff of Seoul said that both these missiles reached a flight speed of 140 miles (230 kilometers), and their maximum altitude was 15 miles (24 kilometers).
Another confirmation of this launch comes from Japan, which claims that its weapon detectors also showed movements. They detected two launches and are still analyzing the flight data and the type of missiles that were launched.
Further, South Korea issued a statement condemning the missile launch and called it “a grave provocation.” According to their statement, this action of the North vandalizes the peace in the region and is a complete violation of the UN Security Council resolutions banning ballistic exercises of North Korea.
Upon this action, the US Indo-Pacific Command pointed out that these launches highlight the “destabilizing impact” of N Korea’s illegal nuclear and ballistic missile programs. The needed efforts for stabilizing this situation were made by South Korea as it contacted its allies US and Japan, after these illicit launches.
During its trilateral talks, S Korea informed that the trio has agreed to reinforce the trilateral coordination against North Korea. The three also repeated their concerns to North Korea and advised the North to return to talks instead of testing new weapons.
These SRBMs launches took place on the last day of the “Hoguk” field exercise between South Korea and the US. An unspecified number of US troops participated in this 12-day field exercise. Soon after this, both countries’ air forces are planning to conduct large-scale training.
Recently, both government’s also agreed upon the joint aerial exercise, which will take place next week. These bilateral aerial drills will take place from Monday to Friday and will involve around 100 US aircraft and 140 South Korean warplanes. The drills will include a few of the world’s most sophisticated fighter jets, such as the F-35.
North Korea point of view on these developments between its neighbor and the US is – “a threat to the national security.” North Korea sees these regular bilateral drills as preparedness for war against them and raises security concerns.
Whereas the US and South Korean governments state these drills and exercises are completely defensive in nature. But the North seems to disagree with it; that’s why since September, it has launched a large number of missiles into the sea. According to them, these launches are simulated tests that are necessary for its tactical nuclear weapons system that they have designed to attack South Korean and US targets if required.
However, they also issued various statements time and again that such missile launches and weapon testing are meant to warn the US and its neighbor about its capabilities.