Washington: The US on Wednesday strongly condemned North Korea’s “provocative” ballistic missile test and asserted that America’s commitment to the defence of its allies, including South Korea and Japan, in the face of such threats remains “iron-clad”.
“We are aware of reports that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) fired ballistic missiles. We are monitoring and continuing to assess the situation in close coordination with our regional allies and partners,” State Department spokeswoman Julia Mason said.
“We strongly condemn this and North Korea’s other recent missile tests, which violate multiple UN Security Council Resolutions explicitly prohibiting North Korea’s launches using ballistic missile technology,” Mason said.
These provocations only serve to increase the international community’s resolve to counter the North Korean prohibited activities, including through implementing existing UN Security Council sanctions. “We intend to raise our concerns at the UN to bolster international resolve in holding the DPRK accountable for these provocative actions,” Mason said.
America’s commitment to the defence of its allies, including South Korea and Japan, in the face of these threats, remains “iron-clad”, she said. The US remains prepared to work with its allies and partners around the world to respond to further North Korean provocations as well as to defend itself and allies from any attack or provocation, Mason said.
“We call on North Korea to refrain from actions and rhetoric that further raise tensions in the region and to focus instead on taking concrete steps toward fulfilling its commitments and international obligations and commitments,” Mason said.
According to the US Strategic Command, its systems detected two North Korean missile launches on August 2, 2016. “The simultaneous launch of two presumed No Dong intermediate range ballistic missiles occurred near the western city of Hwangju,” it said.
“Initial indications reveal one of the missiles exploded immediately after launch, while the second was tracked over North Korea and into the Sea of Japan,” US Strategic Command said in a statement.
The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) determined the missile launches from North Korea did not pose a threat to North America.