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(LEAD) N. Korea fires 2 unidentified projectiles into East Sea: JCS

Defense 07:05 August 10, 2019

(ATTN: ADDS more details throughout, photo)

SEOUL, Aug. 10 (Yonhap) -- North Korea fired yet more unidentified projectiles into the East Sea on Saturday, South Korea's military said, the latest launch in a series of saber-rattling moves against the current joint exercise between Seoul and Washington.

Two projectiles were fired from near its eastern coastal city of Hamhung in South Hamgyong Province earlier in the day, according to the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS). No other details were immediately known, including their type, flight range and maximum altitude.

"Our military is monitoring the situation in case of additional launches while maintaining a readiness posture," the JCS said in a brief release.

Saturday's launch came just four days after the North fired two projectiles believed to be the newly developed short-range ballistic missiles known as KN-23 into the East Sea. It is also the fifth such launch since July 25, when it also fired two short-range missiles.

Such military moves are apparently a show of force against the combined military exercise between South Korea and the U.S.

The allies kicked off their summertime military exercise on Monday for about a three-week run, which is meant to test South Korea's operational capabilities for the conditions-based transition of wartime operational control of combined forces from Washington to Seoul, according to Seoul officials.

Denouncing the exercise as a rehearsal for invasion, however, the North has repeatedly demanded its cancellation and threatened to seek "a new way" rather than engagement.

Sending a letter to U.S. President Donald Trump this week, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un expressed his displeasure with the joint military exercises, Trump said Friday.

A "new-type tactical guided missile" is launched on Aug. 6, 2019, in this photo released by the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Aug. 7, 2019. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, who watched the firing, said this week's missile launches were an "adequate warning" against the joint military exercise between South Korea and the United States that kicked off earlier this week, the KCNA said. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)

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