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Japan to Hold Evacuation Drills in March in Response to N Korean Missile Threat

© AP Photo / Lee Jin-manA man watches a TV news program showing a file footage of a missile launch conducted by North Korea, at the Seoul Train Station in Seoul, South Korea, Saturday, April 23, 2016
A man watches a TV news program showing a file footage of a missile launch conducted by North Korea, at the Seoul Train Station in Seoul, South Korea, Saturday, April 23, 2016 - Sputnik International
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Japan plans to hold evacuation drills in several months in response to the nuclear threat from North Korea.

Two Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) interceptors are launched during a successful intercept test. - Sputnik International
Pentagon Confident Missile Defense System Will Protect US if N Korea Attacks
TOKYO (Sputnik) — Japanese authorities plan to finish the process of selecting participating municipalities in January before starting the drills scheduled for March, The Nikkei newspaper reported on Wednesday.

The drills are set to be conducted using Japan's satellite-based J-Alert warning system, which is designed to relay emergency messages within 20 seconds via loudspeakers and cellphones, according to the publication.

Residents will be trained to seek underground shelter in case of an incoming North Korean missile, with between 10 and 15 minutes to spare before impact.

Japan is highly wary of North Korea's continued ballistic missile tests, usually conducted in the Sea of Japan, as well as recurring nuclear tests. North Korea has not made direct threats against Japan, however, the country said US military bases in Asia, including those in Japan, could be targeted.

China North Korea Border - Sputnik International
Beijing Reiterates Its Commitment to Denuclearization of Korean Peninsula
On September 5, Pyongyang launched three ballistic missiles in the direction of the Sea of Japan. Several days later it conducted a successful test of a nuclear warhead, which is believed to be the fifth and largest blast since Pyongyang began pursuing nuclear and ballistic missile programs. In the latest New Year's address to the nation, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said the country was finalizing preparations for another intercontinental ballistic missile test.

The UN Security Council imposed new sanctions against the North Korea in 2016 in response to nuclear test and missile launches. Japan, South Korea and the United States later introduced additional sanctions against the country.

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