North Korea has fired a second ballistic missile within hours, according to the South Korean military. The General Staff in Seoul announced that a missile flew towards the Sea of Japan (Korean: East Sea) on Monday. At first it was unclear how far she flew.
It was only late on Sunday evening (local time) that South Korea's military recorded the test of a North Korean short-range missile. It fell into the sea after a flight of around 570 kilometers in an easterly direction. A few hours earlier, according to reports from South Korean broadcasters, the nuclear-powered American submarine "USS Missouri" docked in the South Korean port city of Busan. The deployment of such and other weapon systems is intended to serve as a deterrent to North Korea.
The General Staff accused North Korea of renewed provocation. UN resolutions prohibit the self-proclaimed nuclear power from launching or even testing ballistic missiles of any range. Depending on the design, such rockets can also be equipped with a nuclear warhead.
New sanctions against North Korea
In view of increased tensions with North Korea, the USA and its ally South Korea agreed in April to increase their military cooperation. This should also include a more visible temporary deployment of American strategic weapons systems, including nuclear submarines.
The USA and its partner countries South Korea, Japan and Australia recently imposed new sanctions on North Korea because of the launch of its first reconnaissance satellite in November. They accuse Pyongyang of using technologies directly related to its intercontinental ballistic missile program. North Korea, which the USA in particular classifies as a hostile state, has tested rockets and guided missiles several times this year after an unprecedented series of missile tests last year.