Japan, US and South Korea to conduct missile detection drills

Updated: Dec 11, 2017, 11:36 IST | Agencies | Tokyo

Japan will hold a drill with the US and South Korea this week to practise jointly detecting airborne missiles, officials said yesterday amid rising security threats from North Korea

Japan will hold a drill with the US and South Korea this week to practise jointly detecting airborne missiles, officials said yesterday amid rising security threats from North Korea.

The announcement of the joint exercise comes less than two weeks after Pyongyang teThe announcement of the joint exercise comes less than two weeks after Pyongyang test-fired a ballistic missile. File picst-fired a ballistic missile. File pic
The announcement of the joint exercise comes less than two weeks after Pyongyang test-fired a ballistic missile. File pic

The announcement of the joint exercise, a sixth such drill since 2016, comes less than two weeks after Pyongyang test-fired a ballistic missile, which dropped into the sea inside Japan’s exclusive economic zone in late November. The drill will be held in waters near Japan today and tomorrow, Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said as he visited a garrison in northern Japan.

It is aimed at "practising tracking an object and sharing information on it among the three countries," said a defence official, adding, "It will translate into a measure against ballistic missiles." A senior UN envoy warned on Saturday that there was a grave risk that a miscalculation could trigger conflict with North Korea as he urged Pyongyang to keep communication channels open after a rare visit to the reclusive state.

'Blockade would be war declaration'

North Korea on Sunday in an article said that a maritime blockade would be a declaration of war, in reference to a new sanction the US mentioned it could impose on Pyongyang after its latest ballistic missile launch. The article warned US President Donald Trump that any attempt at a sea blockade, "will be followed by immediate and merciless countera-ction for self-defence from the North Korea".

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