North Korea confirms latest launch of cruise missiles
North Korea has confirmed it test-fired two long-range cruise missiles as well as surface-to-surface tactical guided missiles over a span of three days, according to the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).
The outlet said long-range cruise missiles flew over the Sea of Japan on Tuesday, hitting the “target island 1,800km away,” which, they said, goes a long way towards “boosting the war deterrence of the country.”
On Thursday, Pyongyang’s military test-fired surface-to-surface tactical guided missiles, which succeeded in proving that the “explosive power of the conventional warhead complied with the design requirements,” KCNA said. The missile can be launched from launcher trucks and trains, and is said to boast enhanced maneuverability.
The total number of weapon tests since the start of 2022 is now six.
Unlike the test-firing of a hypersonic missile in mid-January, the launches on Tuesday and Thursday were apparently not observed by Kim Jong-un personally. However, the same media outlet published an article featuring photos of the supreme leader during a visit to a munitions factory that manufactures a “major weapon system.” According to the article, Kim “highly appreciated the factory effecting collective innovation and leaping progress in producing major weapons.”
Last week, Pyongyang warned that it might resume “all temporarily suspended activities” in response to new US sanctions and continued military drills with South Korea.
On Wednesday, a spokesperson for the US State Department condemned the latest launches by North Korea as a violation of multiple UN Security Council resolutions and a threat to North Korea’s neighbors and the international community.
Seoul described the launches as “very regrettable,” and convened an emergency meeting of South Korea’s National Security Council.