WASHINGTON, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) -- The United States urged the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to exercise restraint and improve its relations with neighbors after the East Asian country reportedly fired four short-range missiles, the State Department said on Thursday.
The missiles were launched from Gitaeryeong area on the DPRK's southeastern coast on Thursday, toward the northeastern waters, according to South Korea's Defense Ministry.
"We are closely monitoring the situation on the Korean Peninsula," U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told a press briefing.
The United States worked very closely with the international community and its partners in the region to address global security and proliferation threat posed by the DPRK, she said.
The South Korean Defense Ministry said the projectiles were estimated to be scud missiles with a range of more than 200 km. It was the first time since July 2009 that the DPRK fired short-range missiles.
The DPRK's move came after South Korea and the United States began their annual joint war games as scheduled despite Pyongyang's demand for a delay or cancellation of the drills.