Kim Jong-un has been warned that Japan will destroy North Korean missiles that enter its airspace – after the rogue state announced measures to launch a spy satellite into orbit between May 31 and June 11.
The North Korean space agency notified the Japanese Coast Guard of the imminent launch via email after previously stating the orbital object would be ready in April.
The Japanese Defence Ministry said: “We will take destructive measures against ballistic and other missiles that are confirmed to land in our territory.”
The Japanese government has said that they are concerned that this space launch is instead a ruse covering the launch of a new nuclear-capable ballistic missile by the hostile nation.
In response to this latest provocation, Japan has deployed Patriot missile defense batteries and Aegis destroyers near to the southern tip of the country’s main island.
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Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno has warned that a missile launch disguised as a “satellite” would threaten his country.
He added that North Korea’s launch would violate United Nations Security Council resolutions and be a “serious provocation”.
Any launch will likely come close to the Japanese Exclusive Economic Zone and cause alarm in Tokyo.
The satellite is purported to be aimed towards the Yellow Sea, East China Sea and the Philippines.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said on Monday that any North Korean launch is a “significant issue that affects the safety of Japanese citizens.”
The threat of a North Korean attack is all too familiar to Japanese citizens.
Air raid sirens frequently sound on the Japanese islands when the rogue nation launches test missiles – including once last month when Kim Jong-un ordered the test of a missile that flew between the two nations.
Worryingly, the test seemed to be for a new weapons system that is more advanced than anything that Kim has displayed to the world so far.
US National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson warned North Korea that its launches “needlessly raises tensions and risks destabilizing the security situation in the region.”
She added: “The door has not closed on diplomacy, but Pyongyang must immediately cease its destabilizing actions and instead choose diplomatic engagement.”
Former US official and whistleblower Dr Alan Diehl has warned that Russia, China, North Korea and Iran becoming closer by the day could turn the East into a “neo-axis” of power in the East, reminiscent of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany.
Dr Alan Diehl, a former US government whistleblower, exclusively told Express.co.uk that a Warm War – where sides in conflict attempt peace agreements while mobilising forces to fight – could erupt between the East and West over Ukraine.