16:05 GMT +319 September 2019
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    A man watches a TV news program showing photos published in North Korea's Rodong Sinmun newspaper of North Korea's Pukguksong-2 missile launch and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Monday, Feb. 13, 2017

    Update: North Korea Launches Ballistic Missile into Sea of Japan

    © AP Photo / Ahn Young-joon
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    The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) fired off another projectile presumed to be a missile as Japanese, Korean and US forces hold military drills in the region.

    According to the South Korean Defense Ministry, the DPRK launched the object from the Sinpo region on its eastern coast. The country's northern neighbor "fired a projectile into the East Sea from a site in the vicinity of Sinpo, South Hamgeyong Province, this morning," the South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff told Yonhap, a local media source. 

    The US military's Pacific Command later said in a statement that the object had been a ballistic missile, probably a KN-15 medium-range ballistic missile.

    The launch is the country's third in as many months. This one comes days before US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are slated to meet face to face for the first time. North Korea is expected to be a major topic. 

    On Tuesday, a White House official said "time has run out" regarding North Korea's nuclear development, adding, "all options are on the table." 

    Trump has pressured Beijing to shut down North Korea's ballistic missile operations, saying China could do so "very easily" by shutting down the North Korea-China border and putting a chokehold on economic traffic between the two countries.

    On February 19, Sputnik reported that China's Commerce Ministry banned imports of North Korean coal, a move believed to be related to the country's ballistic missile test on February 12.

    North Korea has been barred by the UN from carrying out ballistic missile launches or nuclear tests.

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