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Tillerson calls for 'global action' to stop North Korea threat

News Agencies | Updated on: 5 July 2017, 10:53 IST

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has called for global action to counter the perceived global threat from North Korea, after Pyongyang claimed to have conducted its first successful test of an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) on Tuesday.

"The United States strongly condemns North Korea's launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile," Tillerson said in a statement, adding "Global action is required to stop a global threat. Any country that hosts North Korean guest workers, provides any economic or military benefits, or fails to fully implement UN Security Council resolutions is aiding and abetting a dangerous regime."

He said that testing an ICBM represents a new escalation of the threat to the United States, its allies and partners, the region, and the world.

Tillerson urged all nations to publicly demonstrate to North Korea that there are consequences to their pursuit of nuclear weapons.

He further said that the U.S. intends to bring North Korea's provocative action before the UN Security Council and enact stronger measures to hold the Pyongyang accountable.

"The United States seeks only the peaceful denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the end of threatening actions by North Korea. As we, along with others, have made clear, we will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea," he said.

Tillerson said that President Donald Trump and his national security team are continuing to assess the situation in close coordination with their allies and partners.

Meanwhile, in the wake of North Korea launching an Inter Continental Ballistic Missile, the United Nations Security Council ( UNSC) has decided to hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday.

"U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley and her counterparts from Japan and the Republic of Korea requested an emergency UN Security Council meeting to be held in the open chamber in response to North Korea's intercontinental ballistic missile launch," TASS news agency quoted the U.S. mission to the UN in a statement.

"The Security Council session will be held tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 p.m. EDT," the statement added.

China also criticised North Korea for launching an Inter Continental Ballistic missile and called on the United Nations Security Council to ban Pyongyang from conducting any launches that use ballistic missile technology, nuclear tests or any other provocation.

"China urges the DPRK to refrain from acts that violate UN Security Council resolutions so as to create necessary conditions for resuming dialogue and negotiation," Xinuhua quoted Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang as saying on Tuesday.

With the orders and supervision of Kim Jong-un, North Korea on Tuesday conducted its first successful test of a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile Hwasong-14, that it claimed can reach anywhere in the world.

An Intercontinental Ballistic Missile reached a height of 2,802 kilometres (1741 miles), according to state broadcaster Korea Central Television (KCTV).

That's the highest ever altitude reached by a North Korean missile, and puts the U.S. on notice that Pyongyang could potentially hit the U.S. mainland.

This launch is the latest provocation when U.S. President Donald Trump is in talks with China, Japan and South Korea on finding ways to deal with North Korea nuclear and ballistic missile program and has said that U.S. is running out of patience.

In a rare announcement, state North Korean television announced that Kim Jong-un had personally overseen the "landmark" test of a Hwasong-14 intercontinental missile (KN-14 ).

The advancement in North Korea's missile technology further adds concerns that it may develop the technology to mount a miniature nuclear warhead on a long-range missile.

South Korea's military confirmed that North Korea had fired an "unidentified ballistic missile" into the Sea of Japan known in North Korea as the East Sea of Korea - from Banghyon in North Pyongan, a province near its border with China.


First published: 5 July 2017, 10:53 IST