• Fri. Dec 1st, 2023

In a rare UN appearance, North Korea defends missile launch

In a rare UN appearance, North Korea defends missile launch

UNITED NATIONS, July 13 (Reuters) – North Korea’s launch An intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) is an exercise of its right to self-defense “to prevent dangerous military maneuvers by hostile forces and to protect the security of our nation,” the country’s UN representative said in a rare appearance at the Security Council on Thursday. .

The 15-member Security Council met after North Korea announced that it had conducted a test on Wednesday. The latest Hwasong-18 ICBMAdding the weapon is the core of its nuclear strike force.

“We reject and condemn the convening of the Security Council briefing by the US and its supporters,” North Korea’s UN ambassador Kim Song told the council.

North Korea last spoke at a council meeting about its nuclear and ballistic missile programs in December 2017, diplomats said.

North Korea – formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) – has been under UN sanctions since 2006 for its missile and nuclear programs. It also includes a ban on the development of ballistic missiles.

In a separate statement on Friday, Kim Yo Jong, the powerful sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, “strongly condemned” the UN meeting as unfair and biased and blamed the United States for escalating tensions in the region.

“The price America will have to pay for provoking us will not be light,” Kim said, adding that he would push for the “biggest” nuclear deterrent until Washington abandons its hostile policy toward Pyongyang.

The council has been divided over how to deal with Pyongyang for the past several years. Veto-wielding Russia and China, along with the United States, Britain and France, have said more sanctions would not help and that such measures should be eased.

China and Russia blame joint military exercises by the United States and South Korea for provoking Pyongyang, while Washington accuses Beijing and Moscow of emboldening North Korea by shielding it from further sanctions.

“Russia and China have prevented this council from speaking with one voice. With these repeated launches, Pyongyang is showing that it is emboldened,” Deputy US Ambassador to the United Nations Jeffrey DeLaurentis told the council.

China slams NATO

DiLaurentis said the US was committed to diplomacy and that “we have repeatedly asked the DPRK publicly, privately and at senior levels to engage in dialogue.” He said Washington had made clear there were no preconditions for engagement and would discuss any issues of concern to Pyongyang.

“The DPRK has not responded to our offers,” he said.

China’s UN Ambassador Zhang Jun told the council that Beijing is committed to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and resolving the issue through dialogue.

“The situation is tense and it is getting more tense,” he said. Zhang said China had noticed North Korea’s latest missile launch.

“The Cold War is long over, but the specter of the Cold War mentality remains. It has not only made the peninsula issue intractable, but has exacerbated hostilities and tensions around the world,” he said.

A communiqué by NATO leaders this week, he told the council, “was as long as it sounded the same old tunes full of Cold War mentality and ideological prejudices”. Zhang said NATO needs to do some “introspection”.

NATO leaders in the communiqué said China had challenged NATO’s interests, security and values ​​with “ambitions and coercive policies.”

“China does not cause trouble and is not afraid of trouble,” Zhang said. “We are ready to respond forcefully and forcefully to any act that violates China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, undermines China’s development and security interests, and violates the peace and stability of China’s neighborhood.”

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Additional reporting by Soo-Hyang Choi in Seoul; Editing: Mark Porter, Deepa Babington, William McLean

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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