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World

North Korea Fires Projectiles Twice Into The Sea, South Claims

Pyongyang has said US-South Korean military drills violate efforts to reach peace.

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Two projectiles were fired into the East Sea (Picture: KCNA).

North Korea has fired two unidentified projectiles into the East Sea, according to South Korean military officials.

South Korea's military alerted reporters to the launches minutes before an unidentified spokesman from the North's Foreign Ministry released a statement denouncing Washington and Seoul over the start of their joint military exercises on Monday.

The statement said the drills leave the North "compelled to develop, test and deploy the powerful physical means essential for national defence".

A North Korean spokesman said Pyongyang remains committed to dialogue, but it could seek a "new road" if the allies do not change their positions.

"It is too axiomatic that a constructive dialogue cannot be expected at a time when a simulated war practice targeted at the dialogue partner is being conducted," the statement said.

"We remain unchanged in our stand to resolve the issues through dialogue. But the dynamics of dialogue will be more invisible as long as the hostile military moves continue."

On Tuesday, a North Korean diplomat in Geneva said at a UN-sponsored conference on disarmament that Pyongyang would have to "reconsider the major steps" taken so far. 

The diplomat also reportedly accused the US of "inciting tension" by holding joint military exercises with South Korea.

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The North's Foreign Ministry released a statement denouncing Washington and Seoul over the start of their joint military exercises (Picture: KCNA).

Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said the North's two projectiles were fired cross-country and were likely short-range ballistic missiles.

They were launched early on Tuesday from an area near the North's western coast and travelled about 279 miles before landing in waters off the country's eastern coast, the JCS said.

The projectiles showed similarities to the short-range missiles North Korea fired on 25 July.

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The projectiles showed similarities with the missiles fired last month (Picture: KCNA).

The North's recent weapons tests have dampened the optimism that followed the third Trump-Kim summit on 30 June at the Korean border.

The leaders agreed to resume denuclearisation talks that had stalled but there have been no known meetings since.

Experts say the North's weapons display could intensify in coming months if progress is not made on the nuclear talks.