Artillery price

North Korea fired artillery barrage overnight, South Korea says

North Korea fired an artillery barrage into a maritime “buffer zone” overnight, the Seoul military said on Friday, after a record launch campaign that included a failed intercontinental ballistic missile test.

Seoul and Washington, which have warned that recent launches from Pyongyang could result in a nuclear test, have extended their largest joint aerial exercises until Saturday in response to the flurry of projectiles.

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Shortly after the move was announced on Thursday, Pyongyang fired three short-range ballistic missiles, calling the move a “very dangerous and wrong choice”.

About 80 artillery shells were then fired at 11:28 p.m. (2:28 p.m. GMT) into a maritime “buffer zone” from the north, the Seoul military said.

The blockade was a “clear violation” of the 2018 agreement that established the buffer zone in an effort to reduce tensions between the two sides, the Seoul Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin called Pyongyang’s ICBM launch ‘unlawful and destabilizing’, and Seoul and Washington pledged to take further steps to demonstrate their ‘resolve and capability’ against threats growing in the North.

Pyongyang fired around 30 missiles on Wednesday and Thursday, including one that landed near South Korean territorial waters for the first time since the end of the Korean War in 1953.

South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said it was “effectively a territorial invasion”.

Experts and officials said Pyongyang was stepping up testing to protest the U.S.-South Korea drills and preparing to carry out another nuclear test, which would be its seventh.

Pyongyang called the joint air drills, dubbed Vigilant Storm, ‘aggressive and provocative military exercises targeting’ North Korea, and threatened that Washington and Seoul would ‘pay the most horrific price in history’ if they continue. .

In addition to extending Vigilant Storm until Saturday, the Seoul Army announced that Exercise Taegeuk, an annual exercise focused on “enhancing wartime transition performance” and crisis management, would be held. next week.

The upcoming computer-simulated exercise will be conducted to build “the ability to carry out practical mission capability in preparation for various threats such as nuclear weapons, missiles and recent provocations by North Korea”, it said. he declares.

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US, South Korea agree to extend joint air drills after North Korea missile tests