North Korea is alleged to have fired two unidentified short-range projectiles from an area near the coastal city of Wonsan into waters between the Korean Peninsula and Japan, South Korea’s military said Monday.
The objects were estimated to have a flight distance of 149 miles and altitude of 22 miles, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement. The projectiles are likely part of North Korea’s combined military drills, the Joint Chiefs of Staff said. The drills began on Friday, the one-year anniversary of leader Kim Jong Un’s summit in Hanoi with U.S. President Donald Trump that ended without a deal.
North Korean state media reported that Kim presided over the exercise. Japan’s Defense Ministry said it could not yet confirm if the projectiles landed inside its territory or exclusive economic zone.
South Korea Director of National Security Chung Eui-yong and other ministers are holding an urgent meeting to discuss the launch this afternoon, according to South Korea’s Presidential Blue House.
If this was a missile test, it would be Pyongyang’s first of 2020. Last year, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said his country would continue to “steadily develop” nuclear weapons and the ballistic missiles to deliver them unless Washington abandons what Pyongyang calls its “hostile policy.” North Korea conducted several launches in 2019 as diplomatic efforts between Pyongyang and Washington began to falter, but the country steered clear of testing intercontinental range missiles or detonating nuclear weapons underground.