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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Joe Smith

North Korea warns of 'unstable confrontation' alongside terrifying missile launch photos

North Korean state TV has released images showing dozens of missile launches while warning the US and its allies are moving the Korean peninsula towards an “unstable confrontation”.

North Korea fired dozens of missiles and launched hundreds of warplanes last week, leading to terrifying evacuation alerts in parts of South Korea and Japan.

According to a report published today (Monday November 7) by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) Pyongyang fired more than 80 missiles between November 2 and 5, and conducted air force drills involving “500 fighters”.

This was, KCNA said, in response to US and South Korean military exercises taking place in the region and “to show the will to counter the combined air drill of the enemy.”

The US-South Korea drills, called Vigilant Storm, have been blasted as an “open provocation” by the north, who conducted their own military exercises and launched dozens of missiles in response.

North Korea said it had launched over 80 missiles in response to US and South Korean military drills in the region (KCNA VIA KNS/AFP via Getty Image)

The missile launches were designed to simulate strikes on enemy air bases and to annihilate air targets at different altitudes and distances, KCNA reported.

The US and South Korea said in a joint statement the drills were a response to an “increased volume and scale of [North Korean] missile tests” over the past year.

They said that considering the evolving threat of the North, both leaders would be committed to expanding the scope and scale of combined military exercises and training.

A statement from the General Staff of the Korean People’s Army said North Korea would continue to respond to military exercises by South Korea and the US with “sustained, resolute and overwhelming practical military measures”.

The news agency was less forthcoming about what appears to be the failed test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) fired on Thursday.

The images comes after North Korean launches triggered evacuation alerts in Japan and South Korea last week (KCNA VIA KNS/AFP via Getty Image)

The North's military said it had carried out an important test of a ballistic missile with a special functional warhead aimed at "paralysing the operation command system of the enemy".

South Korean brass said that the missile, which they believe was an ICBM, “did not fly normally”, failing to reach the necessary speed to be effective.

Thursday’s launch followed a previous one in May, fired on the heels of US President Joe Biden ’s first presidential trip to Asia.

South Korean military experts are continuing to examine the images and data to determine the status of North Korea’s weapons program, but experts caution that claims in state media need to be treated with skepticism.

File photo of North Korea leader Kim Jong-un during military training of tactical nuclear operation units (EyePress News/REX/Shutterstock)

Shin Jong-woo, an analyst at South Korea’s Defense and Security Forum, told CNN the multiple launches could be a sign that North Korea is racing to prove its capabilities.

“In the past, when North Korea launched a certain missile, it showed off by presenting specific data, but today’s announcement seems to have a lot of fictional content.

“North Korea conducted a nuclear test after demonstrating its ability to strike the US mainland,” Shin said. “But Hwasong-17 [ICBM] tests are failing, so it seems that North Korea is launching so many missiles because it is in a desperate situation and in a hurry to prove itself.”

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