North Korea fires two more missiles, South says

North Korea fires two more missiles, South says

A ballistic missile being launched from an unknown location in North Korea early on Wednesday

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North Korea has carried out a series of missile launches in recent weeks

North Korea has fired two unidentified missiles, its fourth such launch in less than two weeks, South Korea’s military has said.

They were fired from South Hwanghae province across the peninsula into the sea to the east, a statement said.

The US said it was monitoring the situation and consulting with South Korea and Japan.

In a statement, North Korea expressed anger at US-South Korean military exercises that began Monday.

While the main drills will start only on 11 August, low key preparation has begun. North Korea has previously said the exercise violates agreements reached with President Donald Trump and South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in.

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Helicopters from a US base south of Seoul are involved in the joint military exercises

In a statement released on Tuesday, the North’s foreign ministry accused the two allies of “playing all sorts of tricks” to justify the military exercises and said their “aggressive nature” could not be covered up.

The North described the exercise as “an undisguised denial and a flagrant violation” of the recent talks between the US and North Korea (DPRK).

“We have already warned several times that the joint military exercises would block progress in the DPRK-US relations and the inter-Korean relations and bring us into reconsideration of our earlier major steps,” the statement warns.

North Korea has been the subject of a series of US and international sanctions over Pyongyang’s development of nuclear weapons and a series of missile tests.

What were the earlier launches?

According to South Korea’s military, the North’s launches on Tuesday appear to be short range ballistic missiles, flying 450km (280 miles) at an altitude of 37km.

Over the past two weeks, the North test-fired what South Korean officials said appeared to have been a new type of short-range missile.

Last Friday, two missiles landed in the Sea of Japan, also known as the East Sea, according to South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS).

The JCS said the missiles flew very low and travelled about 220km (140 miles). Analysts said they appeared to have been unusually fast.

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Media captionWhat could war on the Korean peninsula look like?

On Wednesday, the North launched two missiles that flew 250km and reached a height of 30km before landing in the Sea of Japan, according to South Korea.

On 25 July, the North had fired two other missiles, one of which travelled about 690km.

That was the first launch since President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un held an impromptu meeting in June at the demilitarised zone (DMZ), an area that divides the two Koreas, where they agreed to restart denuclearisation talks.

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