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US Slams North Korean's Planned Rocket Launch

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As North Korea gears up to fire "satellite" rocket launch this month, the United States of America today said the launch would be a highly provocative act that threatens peace and security in the region.

Reports say the planned launch window will be on December 10 - 22 and would be North Korea's second launch attempt under leader Kim Jong Un.

In her remarks today in Washington DC, Department Spokesperson
Victoria Nuland says any North Korean launch using ballistic missile technology is in direct violation of UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) 1718 and 1874.

kim
Kim Jong-il on 24 August 2011. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

"The UN Security Council Presidential Statement adopted unanimously on April 16, 2012 strongly condemned North Korea's April 13 launch and expressed its determination to take action accordingly in the event of a further launch." - Ms. Nuland

The US renews call on North Korea to comply fully with its obligations under all relevant UNSCRs.

She says devoting scarce resources to the development of nuclear weapons and long-range missiles will only further isolate and impoverish North Korea.

The path to security for North Korea lies in investing in its people and abiding by its commitments and international obligations, Ms. Nuland added.

She says the United States is consulting closely with its Six-Party and other key allies and partners on next steps.

In March this year, the North Korea had announced that it plans to carry out a missile launch in April, to mark the 100th birthday of its late leader, Kim Il-sung.

The announcement has sparked condemnation from the United States and international community.

The United States said the launching would violate United Nations Security Council resolutions demanding that North Korea stop launching rockets that use long-range intercontinental ballistic missile technology, like the one that would carry the satellite to space.

Reports say the United States and the Security Council have condemned such satellite launchings in the past, as a cover for developing the missiles, which reportedly could be used to deliver nuclear weapons.

UN Security Council Resolutions 1718 and 1874 clearly and unequivocally prohibit North Korea from conducting launches that use ballistic missile technology.

Such a missile launch would pose a threat to regional security and would also be inconsistent with North Korea's recent undertaking to refrain from long-range missile launches.

The United States is consulting closely with its international partners on next steps.

United States remains committed to a denuclearized North Korea that respects the rights of its citizens.

In June 2009, the United Nations unanimously adopted resolution 1874, imposing stricter sanctions on the recalcitrant regime.

The new resolution has 34 points, the first of which "Condemns in the strongest terms the nuclear test conducted by the DPRK on 25 May 2009 (local time) in violation and flagrant disregard of its relevant resolutions, in particular resolutions 1695 (2006) and 1718 (2006), and the statement of its President of 13 April 2009 (S/PRST/2009/7)."

Since the adoption of Resolution 1874, countries have intercepted and seized tons of contraband cargo, including a massive arms shipment uncovered by Thailand in December. These interdictions show that countries are taking seriously their obligations to enforce these tough new measures. The United States will continue to press on sanctions implementation until there is concrete, verifiable progress on denuclearization.

Advancing human rights is a top U.S. priority in US North Korea policy as well and is among the primary factors that will determine if any long-term improvement between the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) will be possible.

Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain english. Read more stories by Mina Fabulous. Contact Mina through NewsBlaze.

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