Last night, South Korea and the US attempted to flex their muscles after the North Korean military successfully test-launched another ballistic missile in the region.
On October 4, residents in northern Japanese regions observed the ballistic missile launched by Pyongyang amid the ongoing military drills. It successfully crossed Japan and splashed in the Pacific Ocean. That missile demonstrated a record distance capability for a North Korean missile. Some analysts said it has the range to hit the bases on the U.S. territory of Guam.
South Korea accused its neighbor of provocation. Washington and Seoul responded by joint missile tests. During the show-of-force drills on October 4, U.S. F-16 and South Korean F-15 fighter jets hit an island target off South Korea’s west coast, using Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) bombs. On October 5, they made surface-to-surface missile launches. In total, the US and South Korean militaries launched four missiles, two by each side. The exact place of the exercises was not revealed. At the same time, the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier is heading to the waters south of the peninsula.
As a result, Washington and Seoul were humiliated when one of the missiles fell at the air base shortly after launch. The Hyunmoo-2 ballistic missile from road-mobile launcher hit the military facilities near the Gangneung city in Gangwon Province in the northeast of the country.
According to local authorities, the incident resulted in no casualties. However, there were no comments on what was the reason of the fire on the spot. Silence of the South Korean military officials led to speculations that Pyongyang attacked the country.
Posting on Facebook, legislator Kwon Seong-dong, who represents Gangneung, said a “weapons system operated by our blood-like taxpayer money ended up threatening our own people.” He also assailed the military’s prolonged silence: “It was an irresponsible response. They don’t even have an official press release yet.”
While posing more threat to the people in South Korea, Washington continues to put pressure on Pyongyang. The United States, Great Britain, France, Albania, Ireland and Norway requested a meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss the latest missile launch of the DPRK. Russia and China opposed the US proposal.
Washington did not stop its attempts to escalate the situation around North Korea and once again accuse the DPRK of developing nuclear weapons.
The United States reported that some activity was noted at Tunnel No. 4 at the Phungeri nuclear test site in North Korea. The satellite observed the area from September 19 to September 29. Washington concluded that “the timing of the seventh nuclear test remains exclusively in the hands of Kim Jong-un.”
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