Japanese Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo says a projectile presumed to be a ballistic missile launched by North Korea on Wednesday morning flew about 500 kilometers and likely fell outside Japan's exclusive economic zone.
Kishi told reporters on Wednesday that the North fired the presumed ballistic missile eastward from an inland platform at around 8:07 a.m.
He said no damage to Japanese aircraft or ships had been confirmed so far.
Kishi said a detailed analysis was underway. He said based on instructions from Prime Minister Kishida Fumio he had told the defense ministry and the Self-Defense Forces to continue taking all possible measures to gather information and monitor the situation.
Kishi said he will work closely with relevant countries including the US and South Korea. He added that he was determined to protect people's lives and livelihood.
Kishi said the North has made about 40 launches since May 2019 and was apparently aiming to improve its missile technology. He went on to say the repeated launches in recent years are a serious concern for Japan and the international community.
Kishi also said that based on the latest launch, the government will consider all possible options, including possessing the ability to strike enemy bases. He reiterated that the government will continue to make efforts to drastically boost its defense capabilities.