North Korea fired a missile on Thursday, South Korea and Japan said, prompting a warning for some Japanese residents to take cover.
The Japanese government warned residents of the northernmost main island of Hokkaido to take immediate cover, saying a missile was likely to fall near the island around 8 a.m. Japan time (2300 GMT).
The ballistic missile was launched off the east coast of the Korean Peninsula, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said.
The launch comes two days after North Korean state media KCNA reported that leader Kim Jong Un called for strengthening the country's war deterrence in a "more practical and offensive" manner to counter what it called moves of aggression by the United States.
North Korea has criticized the recent series of joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea as escalating tensions, stepping up its weapons tests in recent months.
U.S. condemns North Korea for test of long range ballistic missile
The United States “strongly condemns” North Korea for its test of a long-range ballistic missile, the White House said in a statement on April 12. “The door has not closed on diplomacy, but Pyongyang must immediately cease its destabilizing actions and instead choose diplomatic engagement,” National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said in a statement.