North Korea and South Korea are firing missiles. Why?

Dristi Sharma
Dristi SharmaNov 03, 2022 | 17:19

North Korea and South Korea are firing missiles. Why?

North Korea fired 23 missiles on Wednesday (November 2), including one that landed less than 60km off the South Korean city of Sokcho. In response, South Korea's military fired three air-to-ground missiles over the disputed maritime demarcation line.

What are North and South Korea saying? Even though both countries have launched the missiles in the South territorial waters, this is the first time North Korea has launched a missile this close to South Korea since 1953 (the time since the peninsula was divided).  


North Korea warned that there would be more severe consequences if South Korea keeps on strengthening its ties with the US. Experts believe North Korea is indicating a nuclear attack, by launching its inter-continental ballistic missiles. 

Seoul called it an "unacceptable" breach of its territory. President Yoon pointed out that "North Korea's provocation is an effective territorial invasion by a missile that crossed the northern limit line for the first time since the division."

White House national security spokesperson John Kirby told Reuters that the North Korean launches were "reckless" and said the United States would ensure it had the military capabilities to defend its treaty allies South Korea and Japan.

Why the tensions are rising between the countries: The tension between both countries started to rise when North Korea on October 6 fired two short-range ballistic missiles towards its east coast in the direction of Japan. During that time, North Korea launched at least six banned intercontinental ballistic missiles within the span of two weeks.

Even though North Korea is not very outspoken regarding its policies on missiles and other nuclear tests, experts are predicting a few possible reasons. Till October 2022, North Korea has launched at least 24 missiles as a part of their testing.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             


Defeat and deter North Korean attack: As part of their practice to 'defeat and deter a North Korean attack', the US, South Korea and Japan have been holding a series of combined exercises over the past few months.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un sees these drills as proof that his enemies are preparing for a war. A statement by the North accused the US of "escalating military tensions on the Korean peninsula".

Allies and enemies: As US-China competition intensifies, China has drawn North Korea closer. South Korea and North Korea have grown further apart, with a new conservative government in Seoul eager to side with the West and take a harder line against North Korea.

North Korea may want to take advantage of instabilities in the region for its own good.

Last updated: November 03, 2022 | 17:19
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