North Korea fires missile over northern Japan

Japanese government says it will respond firmly to ‘unprecedented threat’ from Pyongyang

North Korea has fired a missile that flew over Japan and landed in the Pacific waters off the northern region of Hokkaido, South Korea and Japan said, in an escalation of tensions in the region. The launch activated sirens and alarms in Hokkaido.

 

North Korea has fired a missile that passed over northern Japan, the Japanese government said.

The government’s J-Alert warning system advised people in the area to take precautions, but public broadcaster NHK said there was no sign of damage from the strike by Pyongyang.

The Japanese military did not attempt to shoot down the missile, which passed over Japanese territory at about 6.06am on Tuesday local time.

Japan’s chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga said that North Korea’s latest missile launch was a threat that Tokyo would respond to firmly.

“This ballistic missile launch appeared to fly over our territory. It is an unprecedented, serious and grave threat to our nation,” the top government spokesman told reporters.

Japan protests the firing in the strongest terms, Mr Suga said, calling a clear violation of United Nations resolutions. Japan will work closely with the US, South Korea and other concerned nations to take a timely and appropriate response, he said.

The missile was fired around 5:58am Japan time (8.58pm GMT), flew over the northernmost main island of Hokkaido around 6.06am and fell into waters about 1,180km to the east of Cape Erimo around 6.12am, Mr Suga said.

Reuters