N Korea fires rockets in show of force

2014-03-04 14:01
Visitors walk past replicas of a North Korean Scud-B missile (R) and South Korean Hawk surface-to-air missiles (L) at the Korean War Memorial in Seoul. (Jung Yeon-Je, AFP)

Visitors walk past replicas of a North Korean Scud-B missile (R) and South Korean Hawk surface-to-air missiles (L) at the Korean War Memorial in Seoul. (Jung Yeon-Je, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Seoul - North Korea fired a volley of rockets from multiple launchers into the sea on Tuesday, in an apparent show of force to coincide with South Korea-US joint military exercises, South Korean officials said.

Three rockets were fired in the morning from a multiple launch rocket system, the South's defence ministry said.

The projectiles were launched from the North's eastern port of Wonsan and flew 55km into the Sea of Japan (East Sea), it said.

The North fired four more in the afternoon that travelled about 155km, the ministry said, adding it was believed to have been testing two different types of launcher.

"North Korea is displaying a show of force openly against our joint exercises," said ministry spokesman Kim Min-Seok.

‘Reckless provocation’

South Korea regards the North's mobile multiple rocket launchers as a dangerous because they can strike strategic facilities far south of the border.

Its troops have increased vigilance following a series of North Korean missile test-launches that drew condemnation from South Korea and the United States.

The North test-fired four short-range Scud missiles off its east coast last week, followed by two more missiles on Monday.

South Korea called the missile launches a "reckless provocation" while the United States demanded the North show restraint and abide by UN Security Council resolutions.

The Scuds are at the longer edge of the short-range spectrum, with an estimated reach of 300-800km - capable of striking any target in the South.

It is not unusual for North Korea to carry out such tests, which often go unreported by South Korea.

But Washington said the latest missile tests breached UN resolutions that require Pyongyang to abandon its ballistic missile programme.

Testing readiness

The missile tests coincide with annual South Korea-US military exercises that started a week ago and run until mid-April.

Pyongyang routinely condemns such joint exercises as rehearsals for an invasion, while Seoul and Washington say they are purely defensive.

Last year the drills coincided with a sharp and unusually protracted surge in military tensions that saw the North issuing apocalyptic threats of pre-emptive nuclear strikes.

By contrast, this year's drills began as cross-border relations were enjoying something of a thaw.

They overlapped with the end of the first reunion for more than three years of families divided by the Korean War - an event that raised hopes of greater cross-border co-operation.

Pyongyang had initially insisted that the joint exercises be postponed until after the reunions finished. But Seoul refused and - in a rare concession - the North allowed the family gatherings on its territory to go ahead as scheduled.

Analysts believe the missile tests reflect Pyongyang's need to flex its muscles in the wake of the compromise over the reunions.

Last week also saw an incursion by a North Korean patrol boat across the disputed Yellow Sea border, the scene of bloody naval clashes in the past.

From Monday South Korea launched a two-day live-fire exercise involving artillery, naval ships and jet fighters to test readiness against any North Korean incursion off the east coast.

Read more on:    south korea  |  us  |  north korea  |  north korea nuclear programme
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
8 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Summer Survey!
Great ideas for the best summer sandwiches!
Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

At last you are able to see the light. You are able to break through obstacles in an innovative and original way. Visualisation is...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.