United Nations Security Council condemns 'outrageous' North Korea missile launch

United Nations Security Council condemns 'outrageous' North Korea missile launch

United Nations Security Council condemns 'outrageous' North Korea missile launch

Updated 30 August 2017, 16:20 AEST

The United Nations Security Council condemns North Korea's firing of a ballistic missile over Japan and demands Pyongyang not launch any more missiles and abandon all nuclear weapons and programs.

The United Nations Security Council has condemned North Korea's firing of a ballistic missile over Japan as an "outrageous" threat, demanding Pyongyang cease all missile tests and weapons programs.

Key points:

  • Security Council doesn't threaten new North Korea sanctions
  • Russia calls on US to abandon defence systems in South Korea
  • Kim Jong-un urges more missile tests

In a statement, the 15-member Security Council said it was of "vital importance" North Korea took immediate, concrete actions to reduce tensions, and called on all states to implement UN sanctions on Pyongyang.

"The Security Council expresses its grave concern that the DPRK is … deliberately undermining regional peace and stability and have caused grave security concerns around the world," the statement said.

The council also expressed "its commitment to a peaceful, diplomatic and political solution".

But the US-drafted statement, agreed by consensus, does not threaten new sanctions on North Korea.

Diplomats say veto-wielding council members China and Russia typically only view a test of a long-range missile or a nuclear weapon as a trigger for further possible UN sanctions.

Meanwhile, China and Russia's UN ambassadors said the deployment of US missile defence systems in South Korea should be abandoned.

And Russia's Vassily Nebenzia said joint US-South Korean military exercises should be scaled down.

North Korea has been under UN sanctions since 2006 and earlier this month the Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions that could slash by a third the Asian state's annual export revenue by$US3 billion ($3.8 billion).

Kim Jong-un urges more missiles targeting Pacific

In the wake of firing the missile over Japan, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has called for more ballistic missile tests targeting the Pacific Ocean.

The rogue state said it conducted a test of an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) to counter US and South Korean military drills and as a first step in military action in the Pacific to "contain" the US territory of Guam.

"The current ballistic rocket launching drill like a real war is the first step of the military operation of the KPA [Korean People's Army] in the Pacific and a meaningful prelude to containing Guam," the North KCNA news agency quoted Mr Kim as saying.

In response to the test, US President Donald Trump, who has vowed not to let North Korea develop nuclear missiles that can hit the mainland United States, said the world had received North Korea's latest message "loud and clear".

"Threatening and destabilising actions only increase the North Korean regime's isolation in the region and among all nations of the world," Mr Trump said in a statement on Tuesday.

"All options are on the table."

British Prime Minister Theresa May called on China to put more pressure on North Korea to stop missile tests.

Defence analyst Hugh White said North Korea's latest test was proof Mr Kim would not back down despite Mr Trump's recent warning of "fire and fury" if the North continued to threaten the US.

"North Korea effectively said 'we don't believe you, we're calling your bluff'," he told RN Breakfast.

Professor White said he believed Pyongyang would eventually perfect an intercontinental ballistic missile.

"For a country with a small and very fragile economy, to put immense resources into developing these missiles and the nuclear weapons to go with them suggests just how serious they are."

Reuters/AP