The North Korea announced that it plans to carry out a missile launch in April, to mark the 100th birthday of its late leader, Kim Il-sung, sparking condemnation from the United States and international community.
The United States says that 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.
On her remarks in DC, US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said North Korea’s announcement that it plans to conduct a missile launch, is in direct violation of its international obligations, and is highly provocative.
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.
Ms. Clinton stresses that 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, Ms. Clinton noted.
“We call on North Korea to adhere to its international obligations, including all relevant UN Security Council Resolutions.” – Ms. Clinton
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.
On 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.