By Lee Chi-dong
SEOUL, June 8 (Yonhap) -- North Korea launched a salvo of anti-ship cruise missiles from its east coast Thursday, South Korea's military said, adding that they flew some 200 kilometers before dropping in the East Sea [Sea of Japan].
"North Korea fired several unidentified projectiles, assumed to be short-range surface-to-ship cruise missiles, this morning in the direction of the East Sea from the vicinity of Wonsan, Gangwon Province," the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said. "The flight distance is around 200 km."
Army Col. Roh Jae-cheon, a spokesman for the JCS, told reporters later that the missiles flew northeastward at a maximum altitude of about 2 km from the port city.
The launches started around 6:18 a.m. and continued for several minutes, he said.
The missiles may be of the same kind as what was unveiled during the April 15 military parade. What looked like a new land-to-ship cruise missile on a mobile launcher appeared at the event.
The North has apparently stepped up efforts to improve the accuracy and range of its missiles including those designed to hit U.S. aircraft carriers operating in waters near the peninsula.
Roh would not confirm the number of missiles fired. Quoting unnamed sources, CNN put it at four.
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