SEOUL, South Korea – North Korea fired six short-range projectiles into the sea off its east coast Thursday, South Korean officials said, just hours after the U.N. Security Council approved the toughest sanctions on the North in two decades for its recent nuclear test and long-range rocket launch.
The firings also came shortly after South Korea’s National Assembly passed its first legislation on human rights in North Korea.
The North Korean projectiles, fired from the eastern coastal town of Wonsan, flew about 60 to 90 miles before landing in the sea, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.
It wasn’t immediately known exactly what North Korea fired, and the projectiles could be missiles, artillery or rockets, South Korea’s Defense Ministry said.
North Korea routinely test-fires missiles and rockets, but often conducts weapons launches when angered at international condemnation.
Thursday’s firings were seen as a “low-level” response to the U.N. sanctions, with North Korea unlikely to launch any major provocation until its landmark ruling Workers’ Party convention in May, according to Yang Moo-jin, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul.
North Korea has not issued an official reaction to the new U.N. sanctions. But citizens in its capital, Pyongyang, interviewed by The Associated Press said Thursday they believe their country can fight off any sanctions.
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Addition reading: UN approves toughest sanctions on North Korea in 20 years