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North Korea fires ballistic missiles over Japan

North Korea fires ballistic missiles over Japan

North Korea has launched a missile over Japan. More than a test, the latest action appears to be a deliberate escalation to get the attention of Tokyo and Washington.

In test cases, notification is sent in advance, which was missing in this case.

The ballistic missile traveled about 4,500 km before falling into the Pacific Ocean - far enough to hit the US island of Guam if it took a different trajectory.

This is North Korea's first missile launch over Japan since 2017.

Japan issued an alert for citizens to isolate themselves in homes or basements.

The UN prohibits North Korea from testing ballistic and nuclear weapons. Flying missiles at or over other countries without any prior warning or consultation is also against international norms.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida described it as 'violent behaviour', while Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada said Japan would not rule out any option to strengthen its defences, including 'counter-offensive capabilities'.