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North Korea launches second possible ballistic missile within a week

North Korea launched what appears to be another ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan (East Sea) on 11 January, the Japanese Ministry of Defense announced on the same day.

Citing information from sources that include the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff, Seoul's official Yonhap News Agency reported on the same day that the missile was launched at about 7.27 am local time from North Korea's Jagang province.

South Korean and US intelligence agencies are conducting further analysis on the latest launch, Yonhap added.

The latest launch has come within a week of a similar test that was conducted on 5 January, which suggests that Pyongyang could be accelerating its missile development programmes.

North Korea claims that the test on 5 January involved a hypersonic missile. Similar to the 11 January launch, this weapon was also launched from Jagang province, which borders China. Pyongyang's official news agency KCNA is yet to release a statement on the latest launch.

In September 2021 North Korea conducted what it claims to be the country's first hypersonic missile test, which was also launched from Jagang province. However, these claims are yet to be verified officially outside the country.

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