North Korean leader Kim Jong Un looking at a rocket warhead tip

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un looks at a rocket warhead tip after a simulated test of atmospheric re-entry of a ballistic missile, at an unidentified location in this undated file photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on March 15, 2016. Reuters/File Photo

SEOUL - North Korea fired a ballistic missile on Wednesday from its western region into the sea off its east coast, South Korea's military said, the latest in a series of launches in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Wednesday's launch, which occurred at about 7:50 a.m. Seoul time (2250 GMT Tuesday), was from a region in South Hwanghae province to the southwest of the capital, Pyongyang, the South Korea's Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.

South Korea's Yonhap News Agency cited a South Korean government source as saying the missile appeared to be a Rodong-type medium-range missile that flew about 1,000 km (620 miles).South Korea's defense ministry was not immediately available for comment about the type of missile that was fired.

On July 19, North Korea fired three ballistic missiles that flew between 500 km and 600 km (300-360 miles) into the sea off its east coast.

The North later said the launches were part of an exercise simulating preemptive strikes against South Korean ports and airfields used by the U.S. military.

The launches follow the agreement last month between South Korea and the United States to deploy an advanced Terminal High Altitude Area Defence anti-missile system in the South.

North Korea had threatened a "physical response" against the deployment decision.

Japan condemned the latest launch as a "serious threat" to its security and said its self-defense force would remain on alert in case of further launches.

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