SEOUL (Web Desk) – North Korea on Monday fired five short-range missiles into the sea off its east coast, South Korea’s military said, amid heightened tensions over the isolated country’s nuclear and rocket programmes.

The unidentified projectiles were launched on Monday from south of the city of Hamhung and flew about 120 miles (200km), landing in waters east of North Korea, South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff said in a statement.

On Friday, North Korea fired two mid-range ballistic missiles into the sea in defiance of tough new UN and US sanctions imposed on the country following nuclear and rocket tests this year.

In recent weeks, North Korea has stepped up its bellicose rhetoric, threatening pre-emptive nuclear strikes against Washington and Seoul and firing short-range missiles and artillery into the sea.

The North has also protested against annual joint US-South Korean military drills, theguardian reported.

Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, said last week the country would soon test a nuclear warhead and ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads in what would be a direct violation of UN resolutions that have the backing of the country’s chief ally, China.