UN calls for investigation into missile launch.
North Korean officials have claimed the missiles it launched earlier this week were a “new-type tactical guided projectile” in its first statement since the test.
It was the country’s first ballistic launch in almost a year and the first since Joe Biden became US President.
Mr Biden has said the US will “respond accordingly”. The US, Japan and South Korea have condemned the tests.
Under UN Security Council resolutions, North Korea is banned from testing ballistic missiles.
The country’s Friday statement, issued through state media outlet KCNA, says the two weapons struck a test target 600km (373 miles) off North Korea’s east coast, disputing Japanese assessments that they flew just over 400km.
The North Koreans warn that Biden should not have criticized the test.
North Korea on Saturday accused U.S. President Joe Biden of “provocation” for criticizing its recent missile launches, claiming the firings are an exercise of its self-defense right and warning the U.S. will face “something that is not good” if such “thoughtless remarks” continue.
Ri Pyong-chol, vice chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party, made the statement, a day after Biden said the North’s launch of two short-range ballistic missiles Thursday was in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.
“We express our deep apprehension over the U.S. chief executive faulting the regular testfire, exercise of our state’s right to self-defense, as the violation of UN “resolutions” and openly revealing his deep-seated hostility toward the DPRK,” Ri said.
“Such remarks from the U.S. president are an undisguised encroachment on our state’s right to self-defense and provocation to it,” he said in the statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency.
The current administration is carrying on exactly as you would expect.
As for the Pentagon, officials familiar with the discussions say military leaders have no immediate plans to respond or escalate — whether it’s by stepping up joint military exercises with South Korea or by raising the U.S. alert status in the region.
And while Biden said the tests violated U.N. Resolution 1718 and promised to “respond accordingly” to any escalation, he also left the door open to diplomacy.
That may be tricky, after top North Korean leaders rejected repeated outreach attempts from the Biden team, and issued fiery warnings last week urging Washington to refrain from “causing a stink.
Kim Jong Un must be getting nervous now, as a UN sanctions committee called for a panel of experts to investigate North Korea’s latest missile launch.
UN Security Council resolutions ban North Korea from developing ballistic missiles and Pyongyang is currently under multiple international sanctions over its weapons programs.
The US-drafted resolution extending the mandate emphasized “the importance of credible, fact-based, independent assessments, analysis and recommendations” on Pyongyang’s weapons program.
The latest expert report in February said Pyongyang is modernizing its arsenal of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles by evading UN sanctions and using cyberattacks to finance its weapons programs.
The new resolution calls for UN experts to present an interim report by August 3 and a full and final report by January 28, 2022.
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