Accessibility links

Breaking News

North Korea Launches 4 Missiles

A TV screen showing a news program reporting about North Korea's missile launch with file footage is seen at the Seoul Railway Station, in Seoul, South Korea, Nov. 5, 2022.
A TV screen showing a news program reporting about North Korea's missile launch with file footage is seen at the Seoul Railway Station, in Seoul, South Korea, Nov. 5, 2022.

North Korea fired four short-range ballistic missiles Saturday as the U.S. and South Korea continue military exercises that were extended an extra day in reaction to Pyongyang’s launches earlier in the week.

South Korea’s defense ministry said the missiles flew about 130 kilometers and reached an altitude of about 20 kilometers over the western sea.

North Korea has launched 30 missiles since Wednesday, including some that triggered air raid alerts and emergency shelter orders in South Korea and Japan. The barrage included a test Thursday of an intercontinental ballistic missile, which reportedly failed in-flight.

South Korea scrambled fighter jets Friday after detecting 180 North Korean military flights near the border as tensions on the Korean Peninsula continued to escalate.

Saturday’s U.S.-South Korea air exercises included the participation of two U.S. B-1B strategic bombers.

The U.N. Security Council met to discuss North Korea's missile launches Friday at the request of the United States, Britain, Albania, France, Ireland and Norway.

The 10 nonpermanent members of the Security Council, which include India, Brazil and Mexico, condemned North Korea's missile launches in a joint statement.

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., called North Korea's 59 ballistic missile launches this year "appalling."

"Equally appalling is the council's deafening silence on this issue," she said of the 15-nation Security Council, which has not issued a statement or ratcheted up sanctions on North Korea for its prohibited behavior.

That has been due to opposition from China and Russia. China has even called for easing sanctions on Pyongyang. Both countries have also pointed to U.S.-South Korean joint military exercises as the cause of heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula, Thomas-Greenfield said.

China's envoy called on Washington on Friday to stop "unilaterally playing up tensions and confrontation" and to demonstrate its sincerity by responding to North Korea's "legitimate and reasonable concerns."

"On the Korean Peninsula issue, the Security Council should play a constructive role rather than always stressing on pressure," Ambassador Zhang Jun added.

Russia also accused the United States of inflaming tensions.

"We note with regret that recently the situation in the Korean Peninsula has significantly worsened, and the reason for this is clear: the desire of Washington to force Pyongyang to unilaterally disarm by using sanctions and exerting pressure," said Russian Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations Anna Evstigneeva.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday condemned the North's missile launches and urged Pyongyang to "cease any further reckless acts."

"The secretary-general urges the DPRK to immediately return to the negotiating table. He also urged the key parties to resume their diplomatic efforts with a view to achieving sustainable peace and the complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," Assistant Secretary-General Mohamed Khaled Khiari said, using the abbreviation for North Korea’s formal name.

  • 16x9 Image

    VOA News

    The Voice of America provides news and information in more than 40 languages to an estimated weekly audience of over 326 million people. Stories with the VOA News byline are the work of multiple VOA journalists and may contain information from wire service reports.