(MENAFN - Saudi Press Agency)
Tokyo, Dhul-Hijjah 23, 1438 H., September 14, 2017, SPA -- North Korea launched an "unidentified" missile eastward from Pyongyang which flew over northern Japan before plunging into the Pacific, officials in South Korea and Japan confirmed Friday.
"North Korea fired an unidentified missile eastward from the vicinity of Pyongyang this morning," South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said. It added that South Korea and the United States are analysing additional information.
The Japanese government also confirmed the launch. A ballistic missile was fired at 6.57 am (2157 GMT Thursday) near Pyongyang and it flew over the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido and fell into the Pacific Ocean 2,000 kilometres east of Cape Erimo on the island, Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga told a news conference.
"North Korea's repeated provocative acts are absolutely unacceptable," Suga added.
In north and north-eastern Japan the J-Alert warning system was activated and the government urged residents in the regions to stay inside or underground.
South Korea immediately convened a National Security Council meeting, while the country's troops carried out ballistic missile training in the East Sea in response to recent provocations.
Late last month, North Korea fired a Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan. The government in Pyongyang also claimed that it tested a hydrogen bomb on September 3.
The United Nations Security imposed fresh sanctions on North Korea on Monday over its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.
Monday's measures came on top of sanctions agreed to by the UN five weeks ago that were expected to cut roughly 1 billion dollars from the country's 3 billion in annual export revenue.
A North Korean foreign relations committee issued a new round of threats against the US and its allies in the wake of the sanctions, warning Thursday that Japanese islands should be "sunken into the sea" and the United States reduced to "ashes and darkness." "The four islands of the (Japanese) archipelago should be sunken into the sea by the nuclear bomb of Juche," said the country's Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, according to state news agency KCNA. "Juche," a word that translates as "self-reliance," refers to North Korea's home-grown political ideology.
03:02 LOCAL TIME 00:02 GMT