8.29.2017

North Korea fires missile over Japan | North Korea News

North Korea has fired a missile that flew over northern Japan and landed in the sea, according to officials in South Korea and Japan.

South Korea’s military said the projectile was launched from the Sunan region near the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, just before 6am on Tuesday (21:00 GMT on Monday).

Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported that the missile flew over the northernmost main island of Hokkaido and broke into three pieces and fell into the waters 1,180km east of Cape Erimo.

The Japanese government’s J-Alert warning system advised people in northern Japan to take precautions, but NHK said there was no sign of damage.

Japan’s military did not attempt to shoot down the missile, which passed over Japanese territory around 6:06am (2106 GMT).

There was no immediate comment from North Korea.

 

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Tuesday that North Korea’s latest missile launch was a threat that Tokyo would respond to firmly.

“This ballistic missile launch appeared to fly over our territory. It is an unprecedented, serious and grave threat to our nation,” the top government spokesman told reporters.

Japan protests the firing in the strongest terms, Suga said, calling a clear violation of United Nations resolutions.

Japan will work closely with the United States, South Korea and other concerned nations to take a timely and appropriate response, he said.

OPINION: Should you be worried about North Korea?

Al Jazeera’s Wayne Hay, reporting from Seoul, said that – although there have been several recent missile launches by North Korea and there are often launches this time of year due to military exercises taking place between the US and its allies in the region – a missile passing over the Japanese mainland will be seen as a bigger provocation.

Hay said that, while other missiles had recently landed in waters close to Japan, the last time a North Korean missile flew over the Japanese mainland was in 1998.

“So this will certainly be viewed by Japan, the United States and South Korea as an uptick in the seriousness of the missile launches coming from North Korea,” he said.

 

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies

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