North Korea’s foreign minister expressed “deep regret” over UN chief Antonio Guterres’ condemnation of the country’s launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile on Sunday, according to a statement on state-run outlet KCNA.
The North fired an intercontinental ballistic missile in one of its most powerful tests on Friday, prompting Guterres to urge Pyongyang to stop any further “provocative actions”.
Foreign Minister Cho Son Hui responded “I deeply regret that the Secretary-General of the United Nations has taken such a deplorable attitude.”
The UN chief’s statement, Cho said, “was a disregard for the purpose and principles of the UN Charter and its proper mission to uphold impartiality, objectivity and fairness in all matters.”
He added that the episode shows that Guterres is “a puppet of the United States.”
Nuclear-armed North Korea has conducted a record-breaking blitz in recent weeks, which Pyongyang – and Moscow – has repeatedly blamed for Washington’s moves to increase the protection it provides to allies Seoul and Tokyo.
Since Kim declared North Korea an “irreversible” nuclear state in September, the United States has increased regional security cooperation.
“We recently warned the UN Secretary General to consider the Korean Peninsula issue based on neutrality and objectivity,” Cho said.
He added that the North clarified that it must “result in self-defense under the alarming security environment on the Korean Peninsula and the region caused by the dangerous military cooperation of the United States and its vassal forces.”
“Yet,” said Cho, “the UN Secretary-General shifted the blame for this case to the DPRK rather than the US.”
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un oversaw Friday’s launch of what KCNA said was the Hwasong-17 – dubbed a “monster missile” by analysts.
The missile flew 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) at an altitude of 6,100 kilometers, South Korea’s military said, slightly less than the ICBM Pyongyang fired on March 24, in what appears to be the North’s most powerful such test to date.
Later on Friday, Tokyo and Washington held joint military exercises in airspace over the Sea of Japan.
The UN Security Council said on Saturday it would discuss North Korea at a meeting on Monday.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and appeared on a syndicated feed.)
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