According to South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, North Korea launched two ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan in an event that took place during joint US-South Korean live-fire exercises, considered the largest ever. Information on the specific type of missiles has not been confirmed by the South Korean military.
According to the Japanese news agency Kyodo News, both missiles fell within Tokyo’s exclusive economic zone, prompting Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to lodge a formal protest with Pyongyang. The launch marks the first such incident since North Korea’s failed attempt to launch a reconnaissance satellite on May 31.
The joint US-South Korean maneuvers, which began in May and will culminate on Thursday, are being conducted 25 kilometers from the border with North Korea. These maneuvers are aimed at commemorating the 70th anniversary of the alliance between Seoul and Washington as well as the 75th anniversary of the South Korean Armed Forces. The exercises involve the participation of F-35A fighters and self-propelled howitzers on the South Korean side, while the United States is contributing F-16 fighters and Gray Eagle drones. More than 2,500 military personnel from both countries are participating in these activities.