NORTH Korea has today launched three short-range rockets from its east coast – its second weapons test in 10 days.
The missiles flew up to 125 miles after they were fired from a town in the South Hamgyong province, South Korea’s military said.
Ten days ago, the rogue state launched two short-range missiles, again from its east coast, into the Sea of Japan after a three-month halt in military tests.
The launches – which officials have said were routine drills – were personally overseen by all-powerful dictator Kim Jong-un.
Following the latest test, South Korea expressed "strong regret" saying the rocket launches violated an agreement aimed at lowering military tensions.
Japan's chief cabinet secretary, Yoshihide Suga, said the rockets were likely ballistic missiles.
He said: “North Korea's latest action, on top of its repeated firings of ballistic missiles, is a serious threat to the peace and safety of Japan and… a grave problem for the entire international society.”
The resumption of testing comes after Kim expressed deep frustration in December over deadlocked talks with the United States.
Nuclear diplomacy between North Korea and the US has largely stalled since the breakdown of Kim Jong-un's second summit with Donald Trump in February 2019 in Vietnam.
After the failed Hanoi summit, North Korea carried out a slew of short-range missile and other weapons tests.
US President Trump downplayed them saying there were short-range weapons that didn’t pose a direct threat to America's mainland.
Kim previously accused western powers including the UK of “illogical thinking” following calls for a top-level UN meeting over his hermit kingdom's last missile launch.
Britain, Germany, France and Belgium all raised North Korea’s weapons test before the Security Council branding them a provocative act which breach global rules.
“The illogical thinking and sophism of these countries are just gradually bearing a close resemblance to the United States, which is hostile to us,” said a North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesperson today.
The spokesperson described the European action as “reckless behaviour … instigated by the United States.”
Kim Yo-jong, sister of North Korea’s leader, earlier defended the controversial launches saying they were not meant to threaten anyone.
They came two days after North Korea’s state media revealed Kim had supervised another artillery drill.
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