North Korea fires missile through Japan’s airspace

Source: North Korea fires missile through Japan’s airspace — RT News

Pyongyang has launched a missile which, according to the Japanese and South Korean governments, passed through northern Japan’s airspace.

The Japanese government activated its J-Alert warning system after North Korea fired an unidentified missile early Tuesday morning.

The North Korean missile passed over Japanese territory around 6:06am local time. The Japanese military did not attempt to shoot down the missile but warned people to take precautions, Reuters reports citing local media.

The Japanese government announced the missile fell into the Pacific ocean just 14 minutes after the launch, some 1,180 km east of Hokkaido’s Cape Erimo, the Japan Times reports.

Japan’s atomic facilities suffered no damage, its Nuclear Regulation Authority said. No damage has been reported to ships or aircraft in the region as the missile broke off into three pieces before falling into the water, a NHK report added.

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Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary described Pyongyang’s latest action as a “grave threat.”

“This ballistic missile launch appeared to fly over our territory. It is an unprecedented, serious and grave threat to our nation,” Yoshihide Suga told reporters, according to Reuters.

Suga added that Tokyo will work closely with Washington and Seoul, as well as other regional countries to issue an appropriate response. South Korea’s presidential office, Cheong Wa Dae, has already convened a National Security Council (NSC) session to discuss the issue.

Pentagon spokesman Col. Robert Manning confirmed that the “missile launch by North Korea flew over Japan” and that the US military was assessing its parameters.

“North American Aerospsace Defense Command, or NORAD, determined the missile launch from North Korea did not pose a threat to North America. We are working closely with Pacific Command, Strategic Command and NORAD, and we’ll provide an update as soon as possible,” he added, according to ABC news.

Meanwhile, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said Pyongyang fired a “projectile… in the direction of the East Sea (Sea of Japan) at 5:57am,” according to Yonhap.

South Korea’s military also confirmed that the “ballistic missile” launched by Pyongyang flew over Japan.

“It passed through the sky over Japan,” the JCS said. It added that the American and S. Korean militaries are now analyzing the latest North Korean missile launch.

The latest incident comes just three days after the North fired three short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan. According to the Pentagon, two of the missiles fell into the water, while a third blew up on the launch pad on August 26.

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North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un. © KCNA

Following Tuesday’s launch and flyby over Japanese territory, the country’s prime minister vowed to do everything in his power to protect his nation.

“We will make utmost efforts to firmly protect the lives of the people,” Shinzo Abe said Tuesday before convening an emergency session on the missile firing, Reuters reports.

The latest North Korean missile launches coincide with the annual US-South Korean Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercises which are set to wrap up on August 31.

The Pentagon previously stated that Pyongyang’s behavior is nothing short of a provocation amid the heightened tensions on the peninsula, after two missiles flew some 250 kilometers before falling into the Sea of Japan Saturday.

“You’re still firing missiles, so that’s a threat. We look at that as a threat,” Manning told reporters, according to Yonhap.

“If you’re asking if those three short-range missiles was less of a threat, the answer is no. It was a provocative action,” Manning added.

Stating that Saturday’s test did not exhibit advancements in Pyongyang’s ballistic missile technology, Manning however added that “we have to make the assumption that they continue to learn throughout each one of these missile launches.”

“We watch (North Korea) very closely and we’d be postured to respond,” the Pentagon spokesman concluded.

Tensions between Pyongyang and Washington reached new heights after US president Donald Trump recently threatened to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea if it continues making threats against the United States.

Trump’s strong comments followed the July 28 Hwasong-14 ballistic missile launch by North Korea, after which Pyongyang boasted about having acquired the capability to strike the US mainland.

Pyongyang responded to Washington’s rhetoric by saying it was working on a plan to launch a medium-range ballistic missile close to the US territory of Guam, some 3,200km from North Korea. Guam, a tiny US territory located in Micronesia in the western Pacific, is home to two major American military bases housing over 6,000 personnel.

In a related development, South Korea’s National Intelligence Service warned Monday that its neighbor might be preparing its sixth nuclear weapon test from a nuclear test site in Punggye-ri. North Korea had conducted five nuclear tests – in 2006, 2009, 2013 and in January and September 2016. During the last test, the North claimed it had successfully detonated a small nuclear warhead.

Amid the ongoing North Korean ballistic tests, the UN Security Council earlier this month unanimously agreed on a new set of restrictive measures against Pyongyang. The new round of sanctions ban North Korean exports of coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood. It also prohibits increasing the current numbers of North Korean laborers working abroad, new joint ventures with Pyongyang and new investments in joint ventures.

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2 Comments on “North Korea fires missile through Japan’s airspace”

  1. joopklepzeiker Says:

    And now i,am gonna eat my chicken tikka !

  2. wingate Says:

    and President Trump sends a letter to Mad Kim , giving thanks for not nuking Japan…

    Good Night USA – good Night western world….

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