The intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14 is seen in this undated photo released by KCNA
The intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14 is seen in this undated photo released by KCNA Reuters

North Korea fired an unspecified ballistic missile off its east coast on Wednesday (local time), Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff said, according to Reuters.

Japan's Coast Guard also reported a suspected ballistic missile launch by North Korea, the report said.

The missile firing comes days after South Korea and US leaders agreed to scale up joint military drills and deployment of American weapons.

US President Joe Biden and his new South Korean counterpart Yoon Suk-yeol agreed on Saturday to hold bigger military drills and deploy more US strategic assets if necessary to deter North Korea's intensifying weapons tests.

North Korea has conducted at least 14 weapons tests since January, including the firing an intercontinental ballistic missile at full range for the first time since 2017.

More recently, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un supervised the test-firing of a new guided weapons system to improve the country’s "tactical nukes".

North Korea has ramped up its missile tests ever since talks with Washington on denuclearization failed.

Former US President Donald Trump tried to reach an agreement with North Korea while in office. Kim and Trump met in Hanoi in 2019 for a summit that left nuclear talks at a standstill.

The pair had met three times since June 2018 but made little progress towards denuclearization.

The Biden administration reached out to North Korea shortly after taking office, but the country did not respond to those overtures.

The Biden administration says it is ready to start talks with North Korea without preconditions, but would pursue working-level negotiations and not the pageantry of another summit.