North Korea test-fired a barrage of short-range ballistic missiles from multiple locations towards the sea on Sunday, South Korea’s military said.
Eight missiles were fired in succession over 35 minutes from at least four different locations, including from western and eastern coastal areas and two inland areas north of and near the capital, Pyongyang, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said.
It said the missiles flew 68 to 416 miles (110km to 670km) at maximum altitudes of 15 to 56 miles (25km to 80km).
South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Won In-Choul held a video conference about the launches with General Paul LaCamera, an American general who heads the South Korea-US combined forces command in Seoul, and they reaffirmed the allies’ joint defence stance, the JCS said in a statement.
Japanese Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi said none of the missiles fell inside Japan’s exclusive economic zone.
The launches came a day after the US aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan concluded a three-day naval drill with South Korea in the Philippine Sea, apparently their first joint drill involving a carrier since November 2017, as the countries move to upgrade their defence exercises in the face of North Korean threats.
North Korea has long condemned the allies’ combined military exercises as invasion rehearsals and often countered with its own missile drills, including short-range launches in 2016 and 2017 that simulated nuclear attacks on South Korean ports and US military facilities in Japan.