Japan Protests Against North Korea's Missile Launch

TOKYO, July 10 (Bernama) -- The Japanese government on Wednesday lodged a protest to North Korea through its embassy in Beijing over its launch of two projectiles believed to be short-range ballistic missiles on the same day.

The action was very problematic in light of safe operations of aircraft and ships, an official at the secretariat for National Security Council was quoted as saying by Jiji Press news agency.

The government intends to collect and analyse related information and increase vigilance against North Korea, which launched short-range missiles also in late June.

At a press conference on Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga criticised the reclusive state and said the latest launch amounted to "violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions" regarding its missile development.

But the government has not changed its stance toward its bilateral talks with Pyongyang on the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korean spies decades ago, he said.

"Tokyo will keep a close watch on progress in North Korea's reinvestigation of the issue that started recently," Suga said.

Suga said that the government is analysing North Korea's intention behind the missile launch.

Parliamentary Senior Vice Defense Minister Ryota Takeda told reporters that North Korea may have tested its "operational capability".

The government held a meeting among senior crisis management and security officials, and bureau-chief-level officials of relevant ministries and agencies including the Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry for discussions on how to deal with the missile launch.


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