Up to seven mobile units with ballistic missiles of various range, from 300 km to over 3,000 km have been detected on the east coast of North Korea. They can be launched simultaneously or in succession over several days, starting from today, military sources said in Tokyo.
Besides the two mobile launchers with medium-range Musudan missiles detected on the east coast of the country, missile units have been moved to the coast of Hamgyong Province in the northeast of the country, with “Scud” ballistic missiles with a range of up to 500 km, and “Nodong” missiles with a 1.3 thousand kilometer range mounted on about five mobile launchers.
An official at the Dandong Border Office, who declined to give his name, told AFP: “Travel agencies are not allowed to take tourist groups to go there, since the North Korean government is now asking foreign people to leave. As far as I know, business people can enter and leave North Korea freely.”
The U.S. administration says that based on recent intelligence it’s likely North Korea may test fire mobile ballistic missiles at any time, reports CNN. Earlier it was announced that a missile might be launched in the direction of Japan. Pyongyang has most probably completed launch preparations, said a U.S. official Tuesday.
On Tuesday Adm. Samuel J. Locklear, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, confirmed that Pyongyang had loaded a medium-range ballistic missile onto mobile launchers at an “unidentified” facility near the east coast.
Moscow will seek to normalize the situation on the Korean peninsula, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “We are confident that the situation is serious. Nuclear tests and missile launches are not jokes.”
However, the rhetoric also plays as just harmful role because mutual accusations, threats and warnings might reach a critical level when people drive themselves into a corner, and they will have to show something to the public opinion, Lavrov said in an interview with RTVi TV channel.
Japan has deployed two warships provided with identical missile tracking systems and SM-3 missiles in the Sea of Japan to intercept the North Korean missile or its fragments should they fall on the territory of Japan.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye said on Tuesday North Korea would hurt its credibilty as a place to do business if it shut down the Kaesong industrial zone and no company from any country would want to invest in the country.
“Investment is all about being able to anticipate results and trust and when you have the North breaking international regulations and promises like this and suspending Kaesong while the world is watching, no country in the world will invest in the North,” Park told a cabinet meeting.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said in Washington on Monday that the United States kept working with its partners in Russia, China and other countries to make Pyongyang abide by its international commitments.
Russian President Vladimir Putin had earlier voiced alarm over the situation on the divided peninsula. China, too, expressed “serious concern” about the growing tensions between the two Korean states.
Voice of Russia, TASS, AFP, IF, RIA, Reuters, Yonhap News Agency, Interfax
Categories: Escalation / Destabilization Conflict