North Korea nuclear program
North Korea nuclear programiStock

South Korea’s military said on Thursday that North Korea has fired at least one ballistic missile toward its eastern sea, the latest in a series of weapons tests that have raised tensions in the region, The Associated Press reported.

Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff didn’t immediately confirm what type of missile was fired or how far the weapon flew.

Japan’s emergency broadcasting system also confirmed a North Korean missile launch and said the missile flew over and past Japanese territory.

It sent evacuation warnings to residents in the prefectures of Miyagi, Yamagate and Niigata, urging them to stay indoors.

The launch comes one day after North Korea fired more than 20 missiles, the most it has fired in a single day ever. One of those missiles flew in the direction of a populated South Korean island and landed near the rivals’ tense sea border, triggering air raid sirens and forcing residents in Ulleung island to evacuate.

South Korea quickly responded by launching its own missiles in the same border area.

Tensions have escalated between North and South Korea after a series of ballistic missile tests that North Korea has conducted in recent weeks.

Last week, the two countries exchanged warning shots along their disputed western sea boundary.

Last month, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un oversaw the launch of two long-range strategic cruise missiles.

Three days earlier, North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles toward its eastern waters. That launch came three days after it fired two ballistic missiles from the Samsok area in Pyongyang towards the East Sea, also known as the Sea of Japan.

In mid-October, Kim oversaw the launch of two long-range strategic cruise missiles. The launch was described by the Korea Central News Agency (KCNA) as a test to confirm the reliability and operation of nuclear-capable weapons deployed to military units.