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North Korea fired two cruise missiles into waters off west coast, South Korean official says

Seoul, South Korea (CNN)North Korea launched two cruise missiles from the coastal town of Oncheon early Wednesday morning. fired. waters off the west coast, according to a South Korean defense ministry official.

South Korean and US military officials said they were analyzing the details of the launch.

After the launch, South Korea's national security adviser held a meeting to assess the security situation and survey military readiness, according to the Blue House.

Meeting participants agreed to closely monitor related developments ahead of joint US-South Korea military exercises scheduled early next week, the office added.

North Korea has not been banned from launching cruise missiles under UN sanctions, the last time it did so in January.

Unlike ballistic missiles, cruise missiles are propelled by jet engines and are closer to the ground, making them harder to detect. Most cruise missiles are not designed to carry nuclear warheads.

The launch came before South Korean President Yoon Seok-yeol gave a speech to mark the 100th day of his inauguration. End the development of nuclear weapons and begin the process of denuclearization.

Yoon also referred to this "bold initiative" to improve North Korea's economy in exchange for denuclearization in a separate remark earlier this week. He first extended his offer in his inaugural address in May.

Rising tensions

North Korea recently conducted a missile test, according to a CNN tally. It's been back-to-back, with Wednesday's launch being his 18th this year.

In contrast, the Hermit's Kingdom will only test him four times in 2020 and eight times in 2021.

His last missile launch was on 5 June, when eight short-range ballistic missiles were launched. South Korea and the United States responded by firing eight more missiles into waters off the east coast of the Korean peninsula.

Tensions between the North and South have risen this year, with US military and intelligence agencies warning that North Korea appears to be preparing to nuclear test. Year.
South Korea and the United States have stepped up cooperation to counter North Korea's nuclear and missile programs,announced that it will reopen in the summer.

This is a developing story.