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DPRK Fires Rocket Shells in Response to U.S.-South Korea Air Drill

General view during the test firing of what state media report is a North Korean "new type" of intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) in this undated photo released on March 24, 2022 by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). KCNA via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THIS IMAGE. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA.

The armed forces of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) conducted a multiple-rocket launching drill Monday morning, the official Korean Central News Agency reported, in response to the U.S.-South Korea combined air drill a day earlier.

The long-range artillery unit of the Korean People’s Army (KPA) on the western front fired two rocket shells of 600 mm multiple-rocket launchers towards the eastern waters, the state news agency reported Monday.

The multiple-rocket launcher was lauded as “the latest type of multiple launch precision attack weapon system” and “a tactical nuclear attack means” assigned to destroy enemy operational airfield, the report said.

The state media also said the United States and South Korea have already staged combined air drills several times this year alone, adding fuels to the simmering tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

The KPA rocket firing came on the same day as a senior DPRK official delivered a second stern warning in two days.

In a sharp rebuttal against suspicions by South Korea over the preparedness of DPRK missile forces as shown by its Saturday launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile, Kim Yo Jong, vice department director of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea, issued a press statement, saying the country “has possessed satisfactory technology and capabilities,” the state news agency said in another Monday report.

According to its previous reports, the DPRK fired a Hwasong-15 at Pyongyang International Airport towards a pre-set area in the eastern open waters on Saturday, a day before Kim Yo Jong issued her first statement in nearly a month, accusing the United States and South Korea of “openly showing their dangerous greed and attempt to gain the military upper hand and predominant position in the Korean Peninsula.”