World / Asia-Pacific

ROK closely monitoring possible DPRK missile test-firing

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-11-16 17:13

SEOUL - The Republic of Korea's military is closely monitoring the possible test-firing of missiles by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Seoul's defense ministry said Monday.

The military is closely watching the DPRK's missile-related moves, noting that the military is maintaining a complete preparedness for any possible missile launches, a defense ministry official told Xinhua by phone.

The official declined to comment on local media reports that the DPRK issued a no-sail zone off its east coast.

Yonhap News Agency quoted a government official as saying Sunday that the DPRK had imposed a no-navigation zone in eastern waters off the coastal city of Wonsan from November 11 to December 7.

The official said that the ROK was closely watching possible DPRK launches of Scud missiles or newly developed ballistic missiles given the significantly wide range of no-navigation zone.

Under UN Security Council resolutions, Pyongyang is banned from using ballistic missile technology to launch any projectiles.

Another government source was quoted by Yonhap as saying that the DPRK may test-fire a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), but the source added that the construction of the maritime launch pad in the DPRK's east coast seemed not to be completed.

The DPRK has issued the no-navigation zone every month since August when landmine explosions maimed two South Korean soldiers. Pyongyang forward-deployed ship-to-ship missiles and 300-mm multiple rocket launchers to the east coast, but no test-launches were conducted yet, the source said.

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