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North Korea Fires Suspected Missile Towards Sea Of Japan

North Korea Fires Suspected Missile Towards Sea Of Japan

Officials in South Korea said they detected the launch from the North’s capital area, expressing their ‘deep concerns and grave regret’

North Korea launched a suspected missile into the sea earlier today (Sunday 27 Feb), South Korean and Japanese officials have said. 

The launch was the eighth round of North Korean weapons tests so far this year - and the first since 30 January. 

Some experts believe the country may see the Ukraine conflict as something of a distraction for the United States and is taking it as an opportunity to accelerate testing activity without any serious repercussions from Washington. 

Japanese Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi said the missile flew about 190 miles at a maximum altitude of about 370 miles, before landing off North Korea’s eastern coast and outside Japan’s exclusive economic zone. 

He said no damage to vessels or aircraft has been reported. 

“If North Korea deliberately carried out the missile launch while the international community is distracted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, such an act is absolutely unforgivable,” Kishi told reporters. 


“Whatever the motives are, North Korea’s repeated missile launches are absolutely inexcusable and we cannot overlook considerable missile and nuclear advancement.” 

Officials in South Korea also said they detected the launch from the North’s capital area, expressing their ‘deep concerns and grave regret’. 

During an emergency national security council meeting, South Korean officials said the timing of the launch – as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues to make global news – was ‘not desirable at all for peace and stability in the world and on the Korean Peninsula’, the presidential Blue House said. 

The US’ Indo-Pacific Command said it condemned the launch, calling on North Korea to refrain from any further acts – with a statement saying the US commitment to the defence of South Korea and Japan ‘remains ironclad’. 

The Command added that today’s launch didn’t pose any immediate threat to US territory, or that of its allies. 

Leif-Eric Easley, a professor at Ewha University in Seoul, said the Biden administration needs to show that it maintains a strategic focus on the Indo-Pacific region, saying the government should respond sternly to the latest provocations from Pyongyang. 


“North Korea is not going to do anyone the favour of staying quiet while the world deals with Russia’s aggression against Ukraine,” Easley said. 

“Pyongyang has an ambitious schedule of military modernization. The Kim regime’s strength and legitimacy have become tied to testing ever-better missiles.” 

Ri Ji Song, a researcher at a North Korean state-run institute on international politics, accused Washington of 'arrogance' and 'doubt standards' as it describes its rivals' defence measures as provocations or injustices.

The expert said in a post published on the website of the Foreign Ministry: “The basic cause of the Ukraine incident lies in the high-handedness and arbitrariness of the United States, which has ignored Russia’s legitimate calls for security guarantees and only sought a global hegemony and military dominance while clinging to its sanctions campaigns."

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: World News