North Korea fires missiles
North Korea has fired seven missiles as South Korea and the US wrap up military exerciseKCNA via Reuters

North Korea has fired seven missiles into the East Sea in what has been seen as a response to the US-South Korea joint military exercise, just when it was being wrapped up.

The surface-to-air missiles were said to be test-fired in an apparent "armed protest" against the joint military drill codenamed Key Resolve, which concluded today, 13 March.

According to Seoul's Yonhap news agency, a statement from the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) read: "[North Korea] fired multiple rounds of ground-to-air missiles into the East Sea from Seondok, South Hamkyong Province, at around 6-7 p.m. yesterday."

There is also speculation that the test-firing could have been personally supervised by the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Seoul and Washington have concluded their annual military exercises, which was said to be "successful," involving thousands of troops from both sides.

"This year's training event involved computer simulations hosted at various sites across South Korea. Key Resolve allowed senior leaders to exercise their decision-making capabilities and trained commanders from both nations in combined planning, military intelligence, logistics and command and control operations," the Combined Forces Command (CFC) said.

The computer-simulated exercise which began on 2 March was to increase defence capabilities of South Korean and American forces against the growing aggression from the North.

More often than not Pyongyang heaps scorn on such military events accusing the neighbouring South and its Western partner of war-mongering in the Korean peninsula.