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Pyongyang shoots two missiles into East Sea

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LEAD) N. Korea fires 2 apparent ballistic missiles eastward from Pyongyang  airfield: S. Korean military | Yonhap News Agency
A North Korean missile is fired from a railway-based platform from North Pyongan Province, a northwestern region bordering China, in this photo released Jan. 15, 2022, by the North’s official Korean Central News Agency. [YONHAP]

North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles (SRBM) into the East Sea on Friday.

It was the 14th missile launch by Pyongyang since the start of the Yoon Suk-yeol administration in May, and the 25th counting all missiles launches this year.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) confirmed that two SRBMs were launched from the North’s Kangwon Province toward the East Sea from around 11:59 a.m. to 12:18 p.m. Friday.

“Our military, with strengthened surveillance and vigilance, are maintaining a fully prepared readiness posture in close cooperation with the United States,” said the JCS in a statement Friday afternoon.

Just two weeks ago, North Korea fired an SRBM into the East Sea, after which Seoul imposed unilateral sanctions on Pyongyang. Before that, the last time the South Korean government imposed unilateral sanctions on the North was after its sixth nuclear test in 2017.

The two-week hiatus in the North’s military provocations coincided with the Chinese Communist Party’s national congress, which took place from Oct. 16 to 22.

BY ESTHER CHUNG [chung.juhee@joongang.co.kr]