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U.S. defines North Korea’s missile tests as ‘attacks’

U.S. defines North Korea’s missile tests as ‘attacks’

Posted January. 20, 2022 08:07,   

Updated January. 20, 2022 08:07


The Joe Biden administration defined North Korea’s continued missile provocations as “attacks,” hinting that North Korea will face a strong response. Ten days after the last U.N. Security Council meeting, Washington convened a new meeting to discuss North Korea’s missile launches.

“We will continue to ramp up the pressure on the North Koreans,” U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.Linda Thomas-Greenfield said in a virtual talk with The Washington Post on Tuesday (local time). “Their attacks are a violation of Security Council resolutions,” she stressed. When asked during a briefing if Pentagon is underestimating North Korea’s missile tests, Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby said it is taking the matter seriously and does not underestimate threats posed by North Korea.

According to diplomatic sources and the Voice of America (VOA), the U.S. called an emergency U.N. Security Council meeting on North Korea’s missiles on Thursday. The U.K., France, Ireland, Albania and Mexico also joined the call for another meeting.

North Korea has carried out four missile launches this year. It test-fired what it claimed to be hypersonic missiles on Jan. 5 and Jan. 11, and continued to launch missiles on Jan. 14 and Jan. 17. Earlier on Jan. 10, the U.N. Security Council held a meeting on how to respond to North Korea’s missile tests. Immediately before the meeting, six countries including the U.S., the U.K., and France issued a statement condemning North Korea.

After North Korea’s launch of hypersonic missiles, the U.S. added five North Korean nationals working for the State Academy of Defense Sciences of DPRK to its independent sanctions list. It will be decided on Jan. 20 whether they will be included in U.N. Security Council’s sanctions list as well. The U.S. has submitted a proposal to the U.N. to include the five North Korean nationals in the Security Council’s sanctions list. If there is no objection among the 15 permanent member countries of the U.N. Security Council including China and Russia, the five North Korean nationals will be added to the sanctions list at 3 p.m. on Thursday (local time).

Jae-Dong Yu jarrett@donga.com