North Korea fires multiple missiles near Japan, residents told to seek shelter

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As per alerts sounded on Thursday, North Korea fired at least three ballistic missiles near the Japanese territory making this the second test flight in a month. This comes a day after the nuclear-armed country fired a record 23 missiles in a day, one of which landed off the coast of South Korea. 

The J-Alert Emergency Broadcasting System warned the residents of Miyagi, Yamagata, and Niigata prefectures of the country to seek shelter indoors as well as prompted the Japanese government to issue evacuation alerts and suspend train services in the country. 

However, minutes after the launch was first reported, Japan’s Coast Guard said that the missile had already fallen into the Pacific Ocean. unkindwhile, South Korea’s connectt Chiefs of Staff said that they detected, what they believe to be an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launch, from near the North Korean capital Pyongyang and subsequently fired two short-range missiles an hour later from Kaechon, north of the capital city. 

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As per Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada, the missiles reached a maximum altitude of 2,000 kilometres and flew about 750 kilometres. Initially, the government had believed that at least one of the missiles flew over the northern territory but later revised that it was not the case and said there were no overflies. 

“We detected a launch that showed the potential to fly over Japan and therefore triggered the J Alert, but after checking the flight we confirmed that it had not passed over Japan,” said the defence minister while speaking to the press. Subsequently, the country’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said that these repeated missile launches by North Korea were “an outrage and absolutely cannot be forgiven.” 

ALSO READ: North Korea launches 23 missiles in a single day, South Korea retaliates

This comes a day after one of North Korea’s missiles landed less than 60 km away from the South Korean coast. After the incident, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol described these missile launches as “territorial encroachment”. This was followed by retaliation in which the government sounded air raid warnings and also launched multiple missiles. 

(With inputs from agencies) 

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