On Tuesday morning, North Korea launched another ballistic missile with a flight path directly over the northern region of Japan including Hokkaido, which is home to over 5 million Japanese people, CNN reported. The Japanese government warned the island’s inhabitants to take shelter.

North Korea's most provoking missile test

The missile’s flight time was around 14 minutes with a distance of approximately 2,700 kilometers. And though it landed safely in the sea, its propaganda value has been significantly considered by the Japanese government which labels the launch the most grievous missile test the North has ever done.

The Japanese people were alerted by their government about the missile’s trajectory over their nation. Transportation and TV programs were interrupted for the alarming news. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan told the press that the incident has been the gravest missile test done by North Korea.

BBC reports that the latest missile launch insinuated a direct challenge to the US president. Several weeks earlier, President Donald Trump threatened Kim Jong-un that he would cause “fire and fury” on the North if the country does not end its nuclear tests.

South Korea’s counter measure

A top military official of Japan Air Self-Defense Force’s Air Defense Command told the media that they did not counter the missile because no threat to Japanese territory has been detected.

However, a warning was issued by the Japanese government to its people in the event that any parts of the missile fell into their territory. The launched missile was identified as a Hwasong 12 according to Japan’s defense minister, Itsunori Onodera.

The missile tests by North Korea on Saturday and again on Tuesday were seen as the North’s message against the U.S.-South Korea military drills that began in the previous week.

North Korea labeled these joint military drills as a preparation for an invasion to the North by South Korea and the United States.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told the Japanese people on a national television that the government “was prepared to take all the measures to protect people’s lives.”

Analysts told the media that the North can only flight-test its mid- or intermediate-range ballistic missiles either to the east or the south considering the locations of its allies, Russia to the north and China to the west.

Since Kim Jong-un assumed leadership in 2011, the North has conducted quite a number of missile tests. But North Korea has not actually launched any of its missiles over Japan until on Tuesday.