North Korea fires 2 short-range ballistic missiles toward East Sea says South Korea

Seoul [South Korea], Mar 21 (ANI): North Korea on Saturday fired two projectiles presumed to be short-range ballistic missiles toward the East Sea, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said, the latest in a series of such launches this month.

This is the third test that has been conducted by Pyongyang this year.

They were fired northeastward from areas near its western county of Sonchon in North Pyongan Province at 6:45 a.m. and 6:50 a.m., respectively, the JCS said, adding that they flew around 410 kilometers, reaching a maximum altitude of around 50 km, Yonhap News Agency reported.

"South Korean and U.S. intelligence authorities are analyzing other specifics," the authorities said. "Our military is monitoring the situation in case there are additional launches and maintaining a readiness posture, the JCS said."

Calling the launch "a very inappropriate act" at a time when the whole world has been facing difficulties due to the coronavirus pandemic, the JCS called on the regime to immediately halt such military moves.

On March 9, the North fired at least three short-range projectiles believed to have come from super-large multiple rocket launchers, a week after launching two short-range projectiles of the same type, according to the JCS.

It was not immediately known if leader Kim Jong-Un guided the latest firing, but officers hinted at the possibility. The North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) also reported on Saturday that the country held an "artillery fire competition" of its army on its western front.

The previous two rounds, which occurred from its eastern regions under Kim's guidance, appear to have been part of its artillery strike drill for the wintertime exercise, JCS officers said, noting that the drill is likely to continue throughout this month. (ANI)