North Korea fires ballistic missile as it vows ‘fiercer’ military response to U.S. and allies

North Korea launched a ballistic missile toward the sea on Thursday, South Korea said, as it vowed “fiercer” military responses to the U.S. and its allies.

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea launched a short-range ballistic missile toward its eastern waters on Thursday, South Korea’s military said, hours after the North threatened to launch “fiercer” military responses to the U.S. bolstering its security commitment to its allies South Korea and Japan.

South Korea’s military detected the launch from the North’s eastern coastal Wonsan area at 10:48 a.m. (8:48 p.m. Wednesday ET), the South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement. It said South Korea has strengthened its surveillance of North Korea while maintaining military readiness in close coordination with the United States.

It was North Korea’s first ballistic missile firing in eight days and the latest in its barrage of tests in recent months. North Korea previously said some of the tests were simulations of nuclear attacks on South Korean and U.S. targets. Many experts say North Korea would eventually want to enhance its nuclear capability to wrest bigger concessions from its rivals.

Earlier Thursday, North Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son Hue warned that a recent U.S.-South Korea-Japan summit accord on the North would leave tensions on the Korean Peninsula “more unpredictable.”

Choe’s statement was North Korea’s first official response to President Joe Biden’s trilateral summit with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts on the sidelines of a regional gathering in Cambodia on Sunday. In their joint statement, the three leaders strongly condemned North Korea’s recent missile tests and agreed to work together to strengthen deterrence, while Biden reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to defend South Korea and Japan with a full range of capabilities, including its nuclear arms.

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Updated: 1 week ago
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