North Korea fired three ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan on Saturday morning — a further escalation after previously flying drones into South Korean territory.
South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff reported Saturday morning that they had detected the launch of three missiles from North Korean territory south of its capital, Pyongyang.
The three missiles traveled over 220 miles from their launch point into the Sea of Japan. The distance indicates that North Korea's capability to strike South Korea has increased.
The missiles are only the latest display of increasing military power from the infamous hermit kingdom.
South Korea on Tuesday apologized to its citizens for failing to shoot down North Korean drones that crossed its borders for the first time in five years.
Lt. Gen. Kang Shin Chul, chief director of operation at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a televised address that the military deployed warplanes and attack helicopters, but they were unable to take out the drones – including one that remained in South Korea for three hours.
Five drones were detected by South Korea’s military Monday, but not a single drone was shot down before they either returned to North Korean airspace or disappeared from Seoul's radar.
The launch is also a response to a rocket recently test-fired by South Korea on Friday meant to further its surveillance capabilities.
South Korea's military confirmed that it had test-fired a solid-fueled rocket on Friday after the unannounced launch led to rumors about a UFO or a North Korean missile launch.
In a statement, the Defense Ministry said that the launch was part of an initiative to build a space-based surveillance capability and fortify the country's defense posture.
The department said it did not flag the public about the launch in advance because it involved sensitive military security issues.
Fox News' Julia Musto and Caitlin McFall contributed to this report.