: Reuters: Latest North Korea missile launch lands near Japan waters, alarms Tokyo

10:18 Aug. 3, 2016

Reuters: Latest North Korea missile launch lands near Japan waters, alarms Tokyo

South Koreans watch a TV news program airing file footage of a North Korean rocket launch at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Aug. 3, 2016 (AP Photo)

 U.S. State Department spokesman condemned the launch

North Korea launched a ballistic missile on Wednesday, August 3, that landed in or near Japanese-controlled waters for the first time, the latest in a series of launches by the isolated country in defiance of United Nations Security Council resolutions.

The main body of the missile landed in Japan's economic exclusion zone, a Japanese defence official said, escalating regional tensions that were already high after a series of missile launches this year and the decision by the United States to place a sophisticated anti-missile system in South Korea.

Read also North Korea boasts test of engine technology for intercontinental missile

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe described the launch as a "grave threat" to Japan and said Tokyo "strongly protested". Japan also said its self-defence force would remain on alert in case of further launches.

A U.S. State Department spokesman condemned the launch, and said it would "only increase the international community's resolve to counter" North Korea's actions.

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