North Korea opens New Year with missile launch
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile toward its eastern waters Sunday, entering 2023 with…
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea fired a short-range ballistic missile toward its eastern waters Sunday, entering 2023 with another weapons test after an unprecedented number of missile firings last year.
South Korea’s military detected the launch from the North’s capital region around 2:50 a.m. Sunday, the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement. It said the missile traveled about 400 kilometers (250 miles) before falling into the waters between the Korean Peninsula and Japan.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff called the launch “a grave provocation” that hurts peace and security on the Korean Peninsula and around the world. It said South Korea closely monitors North Korean moves in coordination with the United States and maintains a readiness to deal with any provocations.
The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command said in a statement that the launch highlights “the destabilizing impact” of North Korea’s unlawful weapons programs. It said U.S. commitments to the defense of South Korea and Japan “remain ironclad.”
North Korea test-fired more than 70 missiles last year. On Saturday, North Korea fired three short-range ballistic missiles toward its eastern waters. Some experts say the country eventually aims to boost its weapons arsenals and increase greater pressures on its rivals to win concessions such as sanctions relief.
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