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Japan’s defense ministry believes that North Korea launched two ballistic missiles of a new type on March 25, Minister Nobuo Kishi told reporters in Tokyo on Friday.
"Those were ballistic missiles of a new type, which had never been launched before," the minister said, adding that the missiles were showcased for the first time during a military parade in Pyongyang in January.
"We will strengthen our missile defenses on the basis of further analysis of those systems," he continued.
Earlier, North Korea announced that it test-launched two new tactical guided missiles on March 25. The country’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper published photographs of their launch from mobile launchers, saying they can carry a payload of up to 2.5 tonnes. According to the paper, the projectiles covered the distance of about 600 kilometers and fell at the designated area in the Sea of Japan. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un was not present at the launch, TASS reports.
North Korea’s KCNA news agency reported on Friday that the new tactical missiles fly at a low altitude and are cable of changing their trajectory. "The development of this missile system is very important for increasing the military might of our country and countering all types of military threats existing on the Korean Peninsula."
North Korea launched two ballistic missiles towards the Sea of Japan on Thursday for the first time since March 29, 2020. The test-launches were registered by Japan’s Coast Guard and confirmed by the South Korean and US militaries.
According to the data of Japan’s Defense Ministry, the two missiles flew to a range of about 450 km, climbing to the highest flight point of less than 100 km. They fell outside Japan’s exclusive economic zone. Meanwhile, the South Korean military reported that the missiles had climbed to the highest point of 60 km and flown to a range of about 430 km.e UN Security Council resolutions prohibit North Korea to hold any launches and tests related to ballistic missile technologies.