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North Korea fires two ballistic missiles into east sea

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North Korea conducted a weapons test by launching two short-range ballistic missiles into the sea off its east coast on Tuesday while South Korea and the United States conduct their largest joint military drills in years, according to South Korea’s military.

The missiles were launched from South Hwanghae province and flew about 620 kilometers. The South Korean military maintained a full readiness posture and was on high alert. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said that Japan was gathering information on the missile, and Japanese chief cabinet secretary Hirokazu Matsuno stated that the missiles did not enter Japan’s territory or exclusive economic zones.

U.S. Indo-Pacific Command said that the North’s weapons programmes have a destabilising effect, although the launches did not pose an immediate threat to U.S. personnel, territory, or allies. Matsuno also expressed concerns about the possibility of further provocative actions, including missile launches and nuclear tests, and pledged to closely cooperate with the U.S. and South Korea over North Korea’s military moves.

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