SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea says the missile North Korea launched Friday morning is likely an intercontinental ballistic missile.
South Korea’s military said the North fired the missile toward its eastern waters.
It later said the missile is likely an ICBM, which North Korea develops to strike the mainland U.S.
Earlier this month, North Korea carried out another ICBM test, but outside experts say the missile failed to fly its intended flight.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story is below:
North Korea fired a ballistic missile toward its eastern waters on Friday, South Korea’s military said, a day after the North resumed its testing activities in an apparent protest over U.S. moves to solidify its alliances with South Korea and Japan.
The South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement that the launch was made on Friday but gave no further details like how far the weapon flew.
The launch is the latest in a slew of missile tests by North Korea in recent weeks. But the country had halted weapons launches for about a week before it fired a ballistic missile on Thursday.
Before Thursday’s launch, the North’s foreign minister, Choe Son Hui, threatened to launch “fiercer” military responses to the U.S. bolstering its security commitment to its allies South Korea and Japan.
Choe was referring to U.S. President Joe Biden’s recent trilateral summit with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts on the sidelines of a regional gathering in Cambodia. In their joint statement, the three leaders strongly condemned North Korea’s recent missile tests and agreed to work together to strengthen deterrence. Biden reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to defend South Korea and Japan with a full range of capabilities, including its nuclear arms.
Choe didn’t say what steps North Korea could take but said that “the U.S. will be well aware that it is gambling, for which it will certainly regret.”
The North has argued a U.S. military presence in the region as proof of its hostility toward the country. It has said its recent series of weapons launches were response to what it called provocative military drills between the United States and South Korea.
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