North Korea today, Thursday, fired two unidentified projectiles into South Korea’s eastern waters as it revives its testing activity to expand military capabilities and pressure the Biden administration while nuclear negotiations remain stalled.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the U.S. and South Korean militaries were analyzing the launches that were conducted from an area on the North’s eastern coast. It didn’t immediately say whether the weapons were ballistic or how far they flew.
According to a report earlier filed by AP, which African Community News is following, Japan’s Defense Ministry said the North Korean weapons were possibly ballistic missiles and did not reach its waters.
The launches came a day after U.S. and South Korean officials said the North fired short-range weapons presumed to be cruise missiles into its western sea over the weekend.
The negotiations over the North’s nuclear program faltered after the collapse of Kim Jong Un’s second summit with former President Donald Trump in February 2019, when the Americans rejected North Korean demands for major sanctions relief in exchange for a partial surrender of their nuclear capabilities.
The North has so far ignored the Biden administration’s efforts to reach out, saying it won’t engage in meaningful talks unless Washington abandons its “hostile” policies.
Kim’s powerful sister last week berated the United States over its latest round of combined military exercises with South Korea that ended earlier this month, describing the drills as an invasion rehearsal and warned Washington to “refrain from causing a stink” if it wants to “sleep in peace” for the next four years.
A few hours after Thursday’s launches, South Korea Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong was to meet with visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Seoul for discussions on North Korea and other regional issues. South Korea’s presidential office said it will hold an emergency National Security Council meeting to discuss the launches.