Sunday, March 01, 2015

North Korea Launches Two Missiles As Joint U.S.-ROK Exercises Begin

North Korea fired two short-range projectiles, presumed to be Scud-type ballistic missiles, on Monday morning South Korean time, Seoul’s military leadership announced. “North Korea fired two short-range missiles with a range of some 490 kilometers into the East Sea from its western port city of Nampo between 6:32 a.m. and 6:41 a.m. (KST) today,” the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a press release. North Korea’s firing of the missiles comes as joint U.S.-ROK military exercises, namely Key Resolve and Foal Eagle, started on Monday. North Korea typically conducts missile launches like this during joint U.S.-ROK exercises, NK News Director of Intelligence John Grisafi said. “(They do this) to draw attention and to demonstrate their own capabilities, partially in protest to the drills.”
North Korean military spokespersons issued a warning earlier on in the day in protest at the routine South Korea and U.S. military drills. “Key Resolve and Foal Eagle are an undisguised encroachment upon the sovereignty and dignity of the DPRK and an unpardonable war hysteria of dishonest hostile forces,” a statement issued by the General Staff of the Korean People’s Army said. “Our revolutionary armed forces will never remain a passive onlooker to this grave situation.” According to South Korea’s military, the missiles, which are presumed to be Scud-C or Scud-D types due to their range, were fired eastwards, something Grisafi says is noteworthy. “They did (firing eastward across the country)a couple times last year,” Grisafi said. “(It) shows they have confidence in the ranges.” Joint U.S.-ROK exercise Key Resolve will be continued until March 13 and the Foal Eagle April 24.