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U.N. secretary-general condemns N. Korea's latest missile launch: statement

North Korea 00:57 February 02, 2022

By Byun Duk-kun

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 (Yonhap) -- U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned North Korea's latest missile launch on Tuesday, also calling on Pyongyang to refrain from further provocations.

North Korea fired what appeared to be an intermediate range ballistic missile on Sunday (Seoul time).

"The Secretary-General condemns the launch of a ballistic missile of possible intermediate-range by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on 30 January," a spokesperson for the top U.N. official said in a released statement, referring to North Korea by its official name.

"This is a breaking of the DPRK's announced moratorium in 2018 on launches of this nature, and a clear violation of Security Council resolutions," added the statement.

This composite photo, released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency, shows an intermediate-range ballistic missile, Hwasong-12, being launched on Jan. 30, 2022. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)

North Korea has maintained a self-imposed moratorium on nuclear and long-range missile testing since November 2017.

Its leader Kim Jong-un, however, said in 2019 that he no longer felt bound by such restrictions. The North also said earlier this month that it would consider restarting "all temporarily-suspended activities."

The country has so far staged seven rounds of missile tests since the start of this year, mostly involving short-range missiles.

"It is of great concern that the DPRK has again disregarded any consideration for international flight or maritime safety," the U.N. spokesperson said.

"The Secretary-General urges the DPRK to desist from taking any further counter-productive actions and calls for all parties to seek a peaceful diplomatic solution."

North Korea has stayed away from denuclearization talks since late 2019. Pyongyang also remains unresponsive recent U.S. overtures for dialogue.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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