Asia

North Korea fires three missiles into sea

A North Korean missile blasts off Image copyright AFP PHOTO/KCNA VIA KNS
Image caption North Korea has tested a number of missiles in recent months

North Korea has fired three short-range ballistic missiles, the US military says.

They were launched from a site in the North Korean province of Gangwon and flew for about 250km (150 miles), officials in South Korea said.

Since firing an intercontinental ballistic weapon last month, Pyongyang has threatened to aim missiles at the US Pacific territory of Guam.

But this latest test did not threaten the US or Guam, the US military said.

North Korean missile tests often come in response to South Korean military exercises involving the US.

Thousands of US and South Korean troops are currently taking part in joint military drills, which are mainly largely computer-simulated exercises.

The projectiles were launched at 06:49 on Saturday (21:49 GMT Friday), South Korea's defence ministry said.

The US military initially reported that two of the missiles had failed but, according to its later assessment, one appears to have blown up almost immediately while two flew about 250km (155 miles) in a north-easterly direction.

The launches were spread over a period of 30 minutes, an official said.

The South Korean defence ministry said: "The military is keeping a tight surveillance over the North to cope with further provocations."

The two Koreas are technically still at war as the 1950-1953 Korean War ended in an armistice.

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