Published: Fri, August 16, 2019

S Korea Says N Korea Has Fired More Projectiles Into Sea

S Korea Says N Korea Has Fired More Projectiles Into Sea

South Korean Joint Chief Staff said North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles from a site near Tongchon city.

The United States has so far rejected North Korea's demands for sanctions relief in exchange for piecemeal deals toward partially surrendering its nuclear capabilities and urged Pyongyang to commit to completely relinquishing its nuclear and missile program. "It added President Moon is an 'impudent" man, and said Seoul better not think of resuming talks along with the North Korea-U.S. talks once the drills are that won't happen.

South Korea's military said Friday, Aug. 16, North Korea fired more projectiles into the sea to extend a recent streak of weapons tests believed to be aimed at pressuring Washington and Seoul over slow nuclear diplomacy.

The official made the comment when asked about whether the absence of wartime issues of forced labor and sexual slavery in President Moon Jae-in's Liberation Day speech on Thursday indicated a shift to a conciliatory stance toward Japan.

Pyongyang's criticism of South Korean President Moon Jae-in harms inter-Korean relations and runs counter to agreements reached at the bilateral summits held a year ago, a deputy spokesperson for South Korea's Unification Ministry said Friday.

US President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un have met twice since their first summit in Singapore previous year and said their countries would continue talks.

The North has ignored South Korean calls for dialogue recently and is seen as trying to force Seoul to make stronger efforts to coax major concessions from Washington on its behalf.

It has also fired several short-range missiles in recent weeks to indicate its anger.

Japan's Defense Ministry said the North Korean projectiles did not reach the country's territorial waters or its exclusive economic zone.

It is the sixth time in little more than three weeks that Pyongyang has conducted a missile test.

Eager to restart the negotiations, President Donald Trump has played down concerns about the weapons, as the North has not violated its promise to suspend long-range missile and nuclear tests.

Calling his Thursday speech on the anniversary of Korea's liberation from Japanese rule on "foolish" and a "citation of spiritual slogans", the statement, attributed to a CPRC spokesperson, said Moon's labeling of the North's weapons tests as "worrisome acts" were "reckless remarks". The White House said it was aware of reports of the launches and was consulting with Seoul and Tokyo.

"Accusing Seoul and Washington of practicing to annihilate the North with their joint drills, the statement continued, "[Moon's] open talk about "dialogue" between the North and the South under such a situation raises a question as to whether he has proper thinking faculty".

In the Friday statement, North Korea said it has no intention to talk with South Korea again, adding that it would be a "senseless" hope to expect talks to resume when the allies' combined training is over.

South Korean analysts say while the CRPC statement took criticism of the South to a new level, it may be more of an expression of Pyongyang's disappointment with Seoul's compliance with USA policy than a true severing of inter-Korean ties.

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