N. Korea fires short-range missile into Sea of Japan - report

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un © KCNA
North Korea has fired a short-range missile into the Sea of Japan, according to a South Korean military official, cited by Yonhap News Agency.

The missile was fired from the North Korean resort town at Wonsan at 5:40 p.m. (08:40 GMT) and flew northeast over the sea for about 200km (124 miles) before it appeared to make contact with land, Yonhap reported.

It comes just one week after the North reportedly launched additional short-range missiles in the direction of the Sea of Japan.  

Just days prior to that launch, Pyongyang carried out a ballistic missile test, firing two rockets into the sea. 

Both Russia and China have criticized North Korea, saying they do not recognize its nuclear ambitions, and that leader Kim Jong-Un should listen to the UN Security Council’s demands to return to the negotiation table.

However, both Moscow and Beijing agree that rising tensions on the Korean peninsula should not give the US a pretext to deploy a missile shield in the region.

Earlier this month, the "robust" new US-imposed sanctions, blocking businesses from any dealings with North Korea, in an attempt to punish Pyongyang for its nuclear tests.

In a March 2 vote, the United Nations Security Council unanimously approved one of the toughest sets of sanctions yet targeting North Korea. 

The restrictions include the mandatory inspections of cargo leaving and entering the communist state by land, sea or air, and banned all sales or transfers of small arms and light weapons to Pyongyang. The UN punishment stipulates the expulsion of those diplomats from the North who engage in "illicit activities." 

However, North Korea fired six short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan just hours after the vote. 

Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama is scheduled to hold a trilateral meeting with South Korean and Japanese leaders on Thursday, on the issue of North Korea.

"This meeting will be an opportunity for the three leaders to discuss common responses to the threat posed by North Korea (DPRK) and to advance areas of trilateral security cooperation in the region and globally," the White House said in a Monday statement.