Security Council May Meet at Request of Tokyo, Washington

Security Council May Meet at Request of Tokyo, Washington

The UN Security Council has strongly condemned North Korea's latest ballistic missile test and vowed strong measures, including sanctions, to derail Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme.

In the statement on Monday, the UN Security Council stressed on the importance of North Korea "immediately showing honest commitment to denuclearization through concrete action".

North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency called the missile a "new ground-to-ground, medium long-range strategic ballistic rocket", and it said the "Hwasong-12" is "capable of carrying a large, heavy nuclear warhead".

North Korea, increasingly isolated over its repeated weapons tests in violation of United Nations resolutions, on Monday renewed its accusation of a USA and South Korean intelligence plot to assassinate leader Kim Jong Un.

Some outside analysts believe the Hwasong-12 missile, if proven in further tests, could help North Korea achieve its goal of developing missiles with nuclear warheads capable of reaching the USA mainland.

Washington and Tokyo called for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council, which was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

"At present the South Korean people are hungry for a new politics, a new society and a new way of life", the official said, regarding the election of Moon, but added change with the North would only come about if Seoul complies with past joint declarations with North Korea.

"If you recall, there was a time when North Korea announced it was suspending this kind of (nuclear) program, but unfortunately certain participants in the negotiations process did not have enough patience".

"More importantly", he added, it "may represent a substantial advance to developing an intercontinental ballistic missile".

The US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, told ABC television that new sanctions against North Korea could hit oil imports and energy.

The missile flew 787 km (489 miles) on a trajectory reaching an altitude of 2,111.5 km (1,312 miles), KCNA said.

British U.N. Ambassador Matthew Rycroft also called the test a threat to global peace and security and said "the United Kingdom favors tougher sanctions".

Pyongyang conducted two nuclear tests and dozens of missile launches previous year, drawing strong condemnation from the global community.

North Korea has tested dozens of banned missiles in the past year, though this was the first success after a string of recent failures.

It was the regime's most successful missile test to date, but officials in in South Korea said more information was needed before the North's inflammatory claim about nuclear warheads could be confirmed.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has told world leaders to stop "intimidating" North Korea following the dictatorship's latest missile test.

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