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North Korea – CRITICAL ALERT

North Korea – CRITICAL ALERT

28-Nov-2019: North Korea – Sea of Japan: North Korea launches suspected short-range ballistic missiles without issuing notice

On 28 November, North Korea conducted at least two suspected short-range ballistic missile (SRBM) launches from a site in South Hamyong province with splashdown in the Sea of Japan within FIR Pyongyang (ZKKP), according to the South Korean and Japanese authorities. Since May, North Korea has conducted a combined total of over 20 additional SRBM and submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) test launches into the Sea of Japan. There are no indications that North Korea provided advanced warning of the SRBM and SLBM launches noted above during 2019 to aviation governing bodies and no NOTAMs were issued regarding such activity for FIR Pyongyang (ZKKP). In early May 2018, North Korea committed to the ICAO that it would provide advanced warning of “activity hazardous to aviation” within its airspace, such as prior notice of artillery, rocket and/or missile tests. ICAO previously called on North Korea to comply with international aviation standards related to missile and weapons tests in order to prevent the recurrence of “potentially hazardous activities” on 7 October 2017. In late September 2018, the US FAA extended its NOTAM and SFAR for North Korean airspace through 18 September 2020 (KICZ A0018/18). The UK, French and German civil aviation authorities also have active advisories in place for North Korean airspace due to the enduring potential for unannounced missile or rocket launches to occur within FIR Pyongyang (ZKKP) with little to no notice.