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SEOUL - North Korea fired four short-range missiles towards the sea off the country's east coast on Thursday, according to a South Korean Defense Ministry official.

North Korea launched the missiles at 5:42 p.m. local time (3:42 a.m. ET) from a mountain site just north of the border with the South, the official added.

The secretive nation has fired short-range missiles into the sea as part of military exercises in the past.

- Reuters