Although the United States has played down recent launches of short-range missiles by North Korea, it will seek substantive action if the communist regime fires again.
A Japanese news outlet reported late Tuesday that the US has warned that if North Korea launches a short-range ballistic missile again, it will demand further measures to be taken by the United Nations Security Council.
According to Japan’s Kyodo News Agency, the US told Japan and permanent members of the UNSC that it will “not overlook” the next launch by the communist regime during an informal UNSC meeting in mid-May in New York.
US President Donald Trump (Yonhap)
Japan said it was not right to overlook North Korea’s missile launches, the Japanese news outlet cited sources with knowledge of US-Japan relations as saying.
Meanwhile, South Korea’s Foreign Ministry said it is closely cooperating with the US and the international community, but did not further elaborate on the matter.
The US has downplayed the significance of North Korea’s multiple launches of projectiles on May 4 and 9, saying they were not direct threats to its territory. It has held off strong criticism.
On May 9, US President Donald Trump said that while nobody was happy about the missile launches, the relationship with North Korea would continue.
North Korea launched multiple projectiles into the East Sea on May 4, calling it a “regular strike drill.” On May 9, the communist regime fired two short-range missiles again, just hours before South Korean President Moon Jae-in was set to hold a live televised interview with a local broadcaster to mark the second anniversary of his presidency.
During the interview, Moon explained that what Pyongyang had launched were two “short-range missiles” and warned the North that such launches would only make negotiations more difficult.
But the South Korean government appears to be reluctant to officially confirm that what Pyongyang launched were ballistic missiles, as it would mean that it violated the UN resolution banning the communist regime from launching any kind of ballistic missile.
Due to this stance, Moon came under fire when he used a word similar to ballistic missiles to refer to the projectiles during a meeting with top South Korean and US military commanders Tuesday.
But the presidential office later said Moon had meant to use the Korean word for “short-range missiles” rather than ballistic missiles.
By Jo He-rim(email@example.com