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DM Iwaya: DPRK launched ballistic missiles in violation of UNSC resolutions

NHK reported today that Defense Minister Iwaya revealed at a news conference held after the cabinet meeting this morning the government’s analysis that based on the information collected so far, the two projectiles launched by North Korea yesterday were short-range ballistic missiles. He said that while Japan’s security was not directly threatened, the launch was clearly in violation of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and “truly regrettable.” NHK cited the U.S. Department of Defense’s statement yesterday that the DPRK launched multiple ballistic missiles and that this action possibly violates UNSC resolutions. A more detailed NHK online report quoted Iwaya as saying that with regard to the projectiles previously launched by the DPRK, “some were short-range ballistic missiles and some resembled rocket artillery; further analysis is necessary to determine the number and types of projectiles.” Iwaya reportedly noted that while there is an opinion that this was a provocation against the U.S. in light of the stalemate in the U.S.-DPRK talks, it is still “premature” to make a definitive determination about North Korea’s intent, adding that further analysis will be required to determine whether the launch will affect the possibility of a summit meeting between Prime Minister Abe and the DPRK’s Kim Jong Un. He said the Japanese government will continue to closely cooperate with the U.S. and the ROK and respond appropriately. TBS and TV Asahi also reported on Iwaya’s news conference.

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