Updated Jul 31, 2019

North Korea fires more short-range missiles off eastern coast

Trump stands at the DMZ line of demarcation to meet Kim Jong-un on June 30. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

North Korea fired 2 short-range ballistic missiles off its eastern coast early on Wednesday, according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Why it matters: The projectiles did not pose a threat to the United States or its allies, a U.S. official told CNN, but North Korea nonetheless has appeared to have conducted its second missile test in a week. President Trump has repeatedly downplayed North Korea's missile tests since meeting Kim Jong-un at the demilitarized zone (DMZ) last month.

The big picture: The latest launches were from the Wonsan area on the Hodo Peninsula on North Korea’s east coast — the same place as last week's missile tests, per Reuters. Pyongyang's state media described those tests as a "solemn warning" for Seoul, though Trump later argued that Kim "didn’t say a warning to the United States," per Politico.

  • Trump claimed stalled nuclear talks between Pyongyang and Washington would resume after the DMZ meeting and trumpeted progress between the two countries.
  • North Korea is angry over planned U.S.-South Korean military drills and may be trying to press the United States for negotiation concessions, AP notes.

Go deeper: Ignoring North Korean missile tests could hamper nuclear talks

This article has been updated with more details on the missile launches.

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North Korea claims it tested "super-large" multiple rocket launcher

People watching a TV showing an image of a North Korean missile launch at the Seoul Railway Station on Aug. 10 in Seoul, South Korea. Photo: Chung Sung-Jun / Staff/ Getty Images

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un supervised the test-firing of a "newly developed super-large multiple rocket launcher," the country's state-run KCNA news agency reports.

Why it matters: This appears to be yet another demonstration of North Korea expanding its weapons arsenal apparently with the intention of increasing leverage ahead of the possible resumption of negotiations with the U.S. to denuclearize, as AP points out.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Aug 25, 2019

North Korea says it tested new rocket launcher system

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un with his army. Photo: STR/ KCNA VIA KNS/AFP/Getty Images

North Korean state news agency KCNA says leader Kim Jong-un "expressed satisfaction" after overseeing the test-fire of a newly developed large-caliber multiple rocket launcher system.

The big picture: KCNA's report on Thursday morning local time contradicts South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff's assessment that Pyongyang had fired 2 short-range ballistic missiles off its eastern coast in the incident early Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowAug 1, 2019

Trump tells Kim to "do the right thing" after North Korean missile tests

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and President Trump attend a meeting at the DMZ separating South and North Korea in June. Photo: Dong-A Ilbo/Getty Images

President Trump said that North Korea's three short-range missile tests this week do not comprise a violation of his agreement with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore last year, but still told Kim to "do the right thing" in a series of Friday tweets.

"I believe that Chairman Kim has a great and beautiful vision for his country, and only the United States, with me as President, can make that vision come true. He will do the right thing because he is far too smart not to, and he does not want to disappoint his friend, President Trump!"

Why it matters: The president has repeatedly downplayed North Korea's ongoing missile tests since his third meeting with Kim, which took place at the Korean DMZ in June. Trump claimed stalled nuclear talks between Pyongyang and Washington would resume after the DMZ meeting and trumpeted progress between the two countries.