The Japanese government reports that their boats and planes may have been hit by the North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launched this morning. The missile took a path directly for their country and landed in waters just off their coast.
The government is investigating reports that boats and planes may have been hit by the missile, either directly or by debris as the missile broke up. It is unclear if the missile remained intact after it reentered the atmosphere, so debris could have scattered across a large area, making a strike of military or civilian craft possible. Government agencies, including the military, are mobilizing to investigate, assist, and respond to the incident.
The missile launch by North Korea is the first since July 4, and appears to be a direct provocation towards Japan, which just instituted new sanctions against the country. A North Korean ICBM, when perfected, could reach the heartland of the United States. The Pentagon is on high alert today after the launch.
Here is the path the missile reportedly took, in a graphic by The Daily Mail.
A missile fired from North Korea has landed in Japan’s territorial waters, the country’s government has confirmed, with officials fearing it may have hit ships or planes.
The intercontinental ballistic missile is believed to have landed in Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone.
It is not yet known whether any vessels or aircraft were damaged.
The Japanese government has established an emergency participation team with members of relevant ministries and agencies.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the launch showed the threat to his country was ‘grave and real’.
He added that there was a need for Japan, the US, South Korea, China and Russia to increase pressure on North Korea over its missile programme.
The missile launch came just after Japan had announced it would increase its sanctions on North Korea.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that a North Korean missile flew for about 45 minutes and appeared to have landed in Japanese waters, adding Japan ‘absolutely cannot tolerate North Korea’s repeated provocations’.
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