NHK quoted PM Abe as telling reporters this morning: “North Korea has once again fired a ballistic missile. Considering the flight trajectory, it could be an ICBM. The government continuously tracked the missile and took appropriate measures to deal with the crisis. We can never accept such a reckless action that tramples on the strong commitment of the international community to resolve the matter peacefully. We lodged a strong protest with North Korea, and will ask the UNSC to hold an emergency session. The international community needs to unite and completely implement the sanctions measures. We will not yield to any provocation and will maximize pressure on North Korea. We will continue to maintain a high-level alert under the robust U.S.-Japan alliance to protect the people and their daily peaceful lives.” The network also reported that DM Onodera told reporters that the missile can be regarded as an ICBM.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga said at a press conference this morning: “We can never accept North Korea’s repeated provocations, and we lodged a strong protest with North Korea. There is no bright future for North Korea without resolving the issues of the abductions and nuclear and missile development. We strongly urged North Korea to change its policies. We will continue to make all-out efforts to collect and analyze information, and should we obtain any new information that needs to be disclosed, we will swiftly do so.”
Meanwhile, NHK said President Trump stressed to the press at the White House that the U.S. will continue to maximize pressure on North Korea. The President was quoted as saying: “It is a situation that we will handle. Nothing changed….We take it very seriously.” The network also said that the President and PM Abe held a telephone conference at about 6:35 a.m.