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S.Korea to seek response measures to DPRK's missile launches

English.news.cn   2014-03-27 16:58:45

By Yoo Seungki

SEOUL, March 27 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's Foreign Ministry said Thursday that it would seek response measures to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s latest launch of ballistic missiles at the upcoming UN Security Council meeting. "The government will make efforts to come up with response measures (to the DPRK's recent missile launches) at the Security Council meeting through a close cooperation with the council members,"Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho Tai-young told a routine press briefing.

Cho said the meeting was scheduled to be held Thursday afternoon New York time, hinting at Seoul's efforts to add sanctions on the DPRK during the upcoming meeting over its recent volley of missile firings.

The DPRK launched two medium-range ballistic missiles, believed to be of the Rodong class, Wednesday morning from the Sukcheon region, north of Pyongyang, toward waters off its eastern coast.

Those were estimated to be Rodong missiles as they flew at an altitude of over 160 km with a top speed of more than Mach 7.0. The Rodong missiles were known to have a range of around 1,300 km capable of carrying nuclear warhead.

The Rodong missiles, which flew about 650 km and landed within waters of Japan's air defense identification zone, were launched for the first time in around five years, and were fired for the first time from mobile launchers.

Following the launch, the Foreign Ministry issued a statement Wednesday, calling it a violation of the UN Security Council resolutions, which banned all ballistic missile-related activities by the DPRK.

Seoul's Defense Ministry especially worried about the firing of Rodong missiles as it could be an indication of the DPRK's another nuclear test.

Defense Ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok told an emergency press briefing Wednesday that the DPRK tended to make other provocations before and after the ballistic missile launch, noting the military was taking note of it.

The DPRK conducted its first nuclear test in October 2006, just three months after launching the Rodong missiles in protest against sanctions on the DPRK's bank accounts in the Banco Delta Asia, said the spokesman.

Pyongyang carried out its second nuclear test in May 2009, two months before firing off other Rodong missiles to protest against the UN Security Council resolution 1874.

The third nuclear test was staged in February last year, just two months after Pyongyang launched the three-stage rocket called Unha-3, which Seoul claimed was a long-range rocket.

The DPRK fired the mid-range ballistic missiles when the trilateral summit between South Korea, Japan and the United States was being held in The Hague, the Netherlands on the sidelines of the third Nuclear Security Summit. Leaders of the three allies discussed issues on the DPRK's nuclear weapons program.

South Korean President Park Geun-hye said in The Hague that building a nuclear-free world should start from the Korean Peninsula by dismantling the DPRK's nuclear weapons program, calling the nuclear-free DPRK as the first step toward a world without nuclear weapons.

The South Korean leader also said nuclear materials in the DPRK could be handed over to terrorists, cautioning a fire at the DPRK' s main nuclear complex in Yongbyon, north of Pyongyang, could cause a catastrophe worse than the 1986 Chernobyl accident in Russia.

The DPRK lashed out at Park's remarks. Earlier in the day, the DPRK's Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea denounced Park by her name, saying if"Park Geun-hye really wants improved ties" between the two Koreas, she should be careful in speech and regain her reason and discernment.

On Wednesday, the committee called Park's warning against the Yongbyon nuclear complex as an expression of her ignorance and a womanish spirit, stressing that denuclearization should be achieved in the whole Korean Peninsula, not in the DPRK alone.

In response, South Korea's Unification Ministry said that Pyongyang cussed at its head of state with unspeakable words in a grave violation of the inter-Korean agreement. The two Koreas agreed to stop slandering each other at the first senior-level talks in seven years held last month.

It urged an immediate stop of such slandering, saying it was very regrettable for the DPRK to turn away even the least of common courtesy.

Related:

S.Korea denounces DPRK's missile launch as provocation

SEOUL, March 26 (Xinhua) -- South Korea on Wednesday denounced the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s launch of two medium-range ballistic missiles as provocation.  Full story

DPRK fires 2 ballistic missiles in violation of UN resolution: S.Korea

SEOUL, March 26 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) fired off two medium-range ballistic missiles Wednesday morning in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions, South Korea's Defense Ministry said. Full story

Editor: Lu Hui
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