(CNBC) North Korea fired a missile that was believed to have crashed into the waters off Japan, the Japanese prime minister’s office said early Wednesday local time (Tuesday afternoon ET).
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ordered an emergency meeting of Cabinet ministers after North Korea’s first ballistic missile launch since Sept. 15, when one flew over northern Japan and into the Pacific Ocean.
“A missile was launched from North Korea which appears to have landed within Japan’s exclusive economic zone,” Abe’s office tweeted. “As soon as new information comes in, we will let you know.”
The exclusive economic zone is a legal designation established by the United Nations Law of the Sea.
The South Korean military conducted a “precision missile-firing drill” as a response to the launch, a South Korean military official told NBC.
A Pentagon spokesman said that it had “detected a probable missile launch” around 1:30 p.m. ET Tuesday.
“We are in the process of assessing the situation and will provide additional details when available,” the spokesman said.
The missile was reportedly fired from South Pyongan Province early Wednesday local time. South Korea and the United States are analyzing the details of the launch, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff told the South Korean news agency Yonhap.
Earlier on Tuesday Reuters reported that U.S. government experts believed the regime was likely to launch a missile “within days.”
The launch comes on the heels of President Donald Trump’s Nov. 20 announcement that the U.S. is designating North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism.
Reuters contributed to this article.