North Korea fires suspected missile into sea
North Korea fired at least one suspected ballistic missile toward the sea on Mar. 24, its neighbors’ militaries said, apparently extending its barrage of weapons tests that may culminate with a flight of its biggest-yet intercontinental ballistic missile.
South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff didn’t immediately say whether the weapon involved in the launch was ballistic or how far it flew. Japan’s Prime Minster’s Office Defense Ministry said the North fired a possible ballistic missile.
It was North Korea’s 12th round of weapons launches this year and came after it fired suspected artillery pieces into the sea on Sunday. Experts say the North’s unusually fast pace in testing activity underscore its dual goal of advancing its weaponry and applying pressure on Washington over a deepening freeze in nuclear negotiations.
The North conducted two medium-range tests from near its capital area in recent weeks that the U.S. and South Korean militaries later assessed as involving components of the North’s largest ICBM, the Hwasong-17, which they said could be tested at full range soon.