North Korea fired several missile launchers on Sunday, according to the South Korean military, while the peninsula is currently experiencing renewed tension linked to Pyongyang’s doubling of weapons tests.
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Since the start of the year, Pyongyang has conducted ten major weapons tests, including two that North Korea described as “reconnaissance satellites,” and tests of its intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) system by Seoul and Washington.
“There was fire this morning, which we suspect came from several missile launchers,” South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.
“Our military maintains a firm defense readiness stance while closely monitoring relevant developments,” he added, without elaborating on further details.
Within an hour, from 7:20 a.m. (22:20 GMT), four shots were fired into the sea west of North Korea, from an unspecified location in South Pyongan Province, Yonhap News Agency reported, citing officials who asked not to be identified. .
South Korea’s National Security Council held an emergency meeting and called for intensified preparations “to prevent any security vacuum during the country’s transitional period,” according to a statement issued by the presidential residence.
President-elect Yoon Seok Yeol will be sworn in on May 10 after winning the March 9 election.
Pyongyang has always had the ability to destroy Seoul, located about 60 kilometers from the border, with artillery fire.
The United States has 28,500 soldiers stationed in the south to protect the country from its neighbor.
Sunday’s launches come days after Pyongyang carried out a failed test that analysts say may be a new ICBM.
The United States and South Korea suspect Pyongyang is preparing to launch a Hwasong-17 missile, which military analysts have dubbed “the monster missile.”
North Korea celebrates the 110th birthday of the regime’s founder, Kim Il Sung, on April 15. Many experts expect a missile launch on this occasion.
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