In a defiant speech to the United Nations Security Council, North Korea insisted its efforts to launch a spy satellite into space were transparent and within its “legitimate right as a sovereign state”.
Pyongyang’s ambassador to the United Nations, Kim Song, defended his country during a rare address to the United Nations on Friday, denying that the country was seeking to acquire ICBM technology through its satellite launch.
Kim said it had “never recognized UN Security Council resolutions that violate the rights of a sovereign country”.
Pyongyang’s second attempt to launch a spy satellite into orbit was made on Thursday, but it failed due to a defect in the third stage of the rocket.
Its first attempt failed in May when the Chollima-1 spacecraft rocket crashed into the sea shortly after launch.
The missile broke into multiple pieces before falling into the Yellow Sea, the East China Sea and the Pacific Ocean, prompting neighboring Japan to issue an emergency evacuation appeal for residents of the southern Okinawa region.
The US National Security Council condemned the launch as a “flagrant violation” of several UN Security Council resolutions, saying it “includes technologies directly related to the DPRK’s intercontinental ballistic missile program.”
The South Korean military said the design of the latest satellite was too primitive to function properly as a spying device, even if it was launched successfully.
The state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported that North Korea will attempt another missile launch in October.
Ahead of Kim Song’s speech at the United Nations, US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas Greenfield urged members to “go back to the era when we used our collective voice to limit nuclear proliferation.”
She added: “We must unequivocally condemn the illegal behavior of the DPRK… and we must call on North Korea to fully and faithfully implement all relevant Security Council resolutions.”
“And we must stand up to the global revenue-generating activities of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, which finances its illegal weapons programme.”
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