N Korea fires ballistic missile into Sea of Japan
North Korea has fired a ballistic missile from a launcher at a southwestern missile site into the Sea of Japan.
The launch took place at a location in the country’s Sukchon County on Friday, said a spokesman with South Korea’s Defense Ministry, adding that the missile was fired at 5:55 am (2055 GMT Thursday) and flew about 800 kilometers (497 miles) into the Sea of Japan.
He did not confirm the type of missile, but South Korea’s Yonhap news agency cited military sources as saying that it was a Rodong missile — a medium-range missile that can fly as far as 1,300 kilometers (807 miles).
On Tuesday, North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un ordered the country’s military to prepare to conduct multiple ballistic missile launches and a nuclear warhead explosion test “in a short time.”
Earlier this month, he had tasked the military with conducting nuclear tests using miniaturized nuclear warheads the country has produced.
Pyongyang also claims that it has succeeded in a simulated test of a re-entry vehicle aimed at returning a nuclear warhead safely back to the atmosphere from space during a recent missile launch.