The US and South Korea today fired eight ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan (called the East Sea in Korea) in response to the missile launches made by the neighboring country the day before.
According to information from the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) collected by the Yonhap agency, military forces from both countries launched the surface-to-surface missiles of the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) in a period of 10 minutes during the early hours of the morning.
“The combined South Korea-U.S. surface-to-surface missile launch demonstrated the capability and posture to launch immediate precision strikes on provocation origins and their command and support forces,” the JCS said in a statement.
The South Korean military “strongly condemns the North’s series of ballistic missile provocations and strongly urges it to immediately stop acts that raise military tensions on the peninsula and add to security concerns,” it added.
“Our government will respond firmly and severely to any North Korean provocation,” Yoon Suk-yeol said during a Memorial Day commemoration at the Seoul National Cemetery, adding that the country will ensure that “there is not a single crack” in the protection of its people.
Seoul, under the government of conservative President Yoon Suk-yeol since May 10, advocates toughening its position against its neighbor after a more conciliatory stage with its predecessor, and has said that they will respond accordingly to North Korean actions of this type. .
“Even at this time, North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats are becoming more sophisticated,” said the South Korean president, noting that Pyongyang’s programs “threaten not only peace on the Korean peninsula, but also the Northeast Asia and the world”.
This coordinated action by Seoul and Washington comes a day after Pyongyang fired an identical number of short-range ballistic missiles from various locations across its territory, in an apparent show of muscle following allied naval maneuvers near the Korean peninsula. .
During those exercises, a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier was deployed, something that had not happened since the end of 2017.
North Korea has carried out a record number of 18 missile launches so far this year, the most recent being the day before.
In its test prior to that, on May 25, the Kim Jong-un-led regime fired two short-range projectiles and an apparent intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) after more than four years.
On that occasion, South Korea and the US also responded with a combined launch similar to today’s, the first they had also carried out since 2017, during a period of special friction between the powers before a few years of détente.
Pyongyang, which used to publicize this type of protest launches in its state media, has not commented on its most recent tests at the moment.
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