Speed Reads

Fight or flight

South Korea deploys 80 fighter jets after spotting 180 North Korean warplanes

South Korea quickly deployed 80 fighter jets after detecting 180 flights by North Korean warplanes in just a four-hour period, CNN reports Friday.

The flights — aerial exercises within North Korean territory — came after North Korea ran a failed intercontinental ballistic missile test, prompting an evacuation warning in Japan, CBS News reports. The jets were, allegedly, an angry response to the U.S.-South Korea annual military drill, which began in mid-October amid North Korea's nuclear threats. None of the warplanes breached the South Korean tactical border.

North Korea has been running military tests throughout the year, much to South Korea's concern. In early October, the country fired a ballistic missile toward South Korean waters. Then, at the end of the month, both countries fired warning shots over a dispute concerning a tactical sea border. North Korea is also upset by South Korea's alliance with the U.S., and fired a missile right after Vice President Kamala Harris visited the Demilitarized Zone and met with South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin called North Korea's actions "irresponsible and reckless." 

"We've said before these kinds of activities are destabilizing to the region potentially. So we call on them to cease that type of activity and to begin to engage in serious dialogue," Austin continued.