İrem GÖL -TDO- North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles into the ocean off its east coast. South Korea decried it as inappropriate amid the global coronavirus pandemic. The missiles were launched from the coastal Wonsan area and flew 230 km at maximum altitude of 30 km, South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff said. Japan’s ministry of defence said they appeared to be ballistic missiles and did not land in Japanese territory or its exclusive economic zone.

These are the eighth and ninth missiles launched in four rounds of tests this month and that would be the most missiles ever fired in a single month. South Korean officials said: “In a situation where the entire world is experiencing difficulties due to Covid-19, this kind of military act by North Korea is very inappropriate and we call for an immediate halt.”

United Nations Security Council resolutions bar North Korea from testing ballistic missiles and it has been heavily sanctioned over its missile and nuclear weapons programs. This month’s military drills have been conducted despite a border lockdown and quarantine measures imposed in North Korea in an effort to prevent an outbreak of the novel coronavirus. On the other hand, South Korea and the United States have postponed some of their joint military exercises because of the coronavirus outbreak in South Korea. Politically and economically isolated, North Korea has not reported any confirmed cases, but some foreign experts have expressed concern.

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