N.Korea Fires Ballistic Missile

      October 19, 2021 13:13

      North Korea fired another ballistic missile on Tuesday morning, the Joint Chiefs of Staff here said.

      The JCS said it detected launch from Sinpo, South Hamgyong Province at 10:17 a.m. The missile was fired toward the East Sea and flew an estimated 450 km. The Korean and U.S. intelligence officials are working to discover further details.

      Sinpo has a shipyard where the North is building a submarine capable of carrying ballistic missiles, suggesting that Tuesday's launch was a test of one of them, the first in two years.

      It came a day after national security adviser Suh Hoon met on Monday with visiting U.S. Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines to discuss North Korean issues.

      Haines also meets with National Intelligence Service chief Park Jie-won and their Japanese counterpart Hiroaki Takizawa on Tuesday. It is their first meeting in five months. Also on Tuesday, the top nuclear negotiators of the three countries are meeting in Washington, and the missile launch may well have been a cry for attention from the North.

      Only a day earlier, Unification Minister Lee In-young told lawmakers at a National Assembly audit that the government is considering providing coronavirus vaccines to North Korea.

      "The possibility is growing as there is public consensus and we can secure enough vaccines to share," he said. Lee added that Seoul is working with the U.S. to help North Korea to fight the pandemic on humanitarian grounds. But he admitted that North Korea must accept the offer first and the cooperation of the international community is also needed. 

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