North fires possible ballistic missile: South Korea, Japan

North fires possible ballistic missile: South Korea, Japan

South Korea and Japan say the North has fired a projectile, apparently a ballistic missile, in the first such launch of the year, hours before Seoul renewed calls for talks.

The presumed land-based missile was launched from the east coast of North Korea and landed in the East Sea on Wednesday, according to the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS).

“Our military is maintaining readiness posture in preparation for a possible additional launch while closely monitoring the situation in close cooperation with the United States,” the JCS said in a statement.

Japan’s Defense Ministry said the missile flew about 500 km before landing in waters outside Japan’s exclusive economic zone.

Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida condemned the launch and described it as “very regrettable.”

“We find it truly regrettable that North Korea has continued to fire missiles from last year,” he told reporters.

Kishida said he had ordered officials to confirm the safety of ships and planes in the area where…

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