S.Korea, US launch eight missiles in response to N.Korea launches

The South Korean and US militaries fired eight surface-to-surface missiles on Monday.

A surface-to-surface missile is launched during a joint live-firing exercise between US and South Korea in unidentified location, South Korea, May 25, 2022. (photo credit: JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF/YONHAP VIA REUTERS)
A surface-to-surface missile is launched during a joint live-firing exercise between US and South Korea in unidentified location, South Korea, May 25, 2022.
(photo credit: JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF/YONHAP VIA REUTERS)

South Korea and the United States fired eight surface-to-surface missiles early on Monday off South Korea's east coast in response to North Korea's short-range ballistic missile launches on Sunday, the South's Yonhap news agency reported on Monday.

The action is a demonstration of "the capability and readiness to carry out precision strike" against the source of North Korea's missile launches or the command and support centers, Yonhap cited the South Korean military as saying.

The militaries of South Korea and the United States fired eight surface-to-surface missiles for about 10 minutes starting at 4:45 a.m. on Monday in response to the eight missiles fired by the North on Sunday, it said.

A surface-to-surface missile is launched during a joint live-firing exercise between US and South Korea in unidentified location, South Korea, May 25, 2022. (credit: JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF/YONHAP VIA REUTERS)A surface-to-surface missile is launched during a joint live-firing exercise between US and South Korea in unidentified location, South Korea, May 25, 2022. (credit: JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF/YONHAP VIA REUTERS)

Background

North Korea's short-range ballistic missiles, fired towards the sea off its east coast on Sunday, were likely its largest single test and came a day after South Korea and the United States ended joint military drills.

Last month, the combined forces of South Korea and the United States fired missiles in response to North Korea's launch of ballistic missiles, which the two allies say are violations of UN Security Council resolutions.

South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, who took office last month, has vowed to take a tougher line against the North and agreed with US President Joe Biden at a May summit in Seoul to upgrade joint military drills and their combined deterrence posture.