On Wednesday morning North Korea launched a long-range rocket, purportedly with the aim of placing a weather satellite into orbit. Missile technology can be used for peaceful as well as military purposes. The UN Security Council has banned North Korea from using any form of ballistic missile technology.
“It is unacceptable that North Korea has once again violated UN Security Council resolutions. We urge North Korea in the strongest terms to refrain from any further destabilising acts,” said Mr Eide.
The six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear weapons programme, in which North Korea, South Korea, the US, China, Japan and Russia are involved, have been stalled since 2009. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors have been denied access to the country since April 2009.
“The rocket launch underlines how important it is to resume the six-party talks as soon as possible. North Korea has a particular responsibility in this respect,” said Mr Eide.
“It is a tragedy that North Korea is spending significant resources on a rocket launch at a time when large sections of the country’s own population are suffering from chronic malnutrition,” Mr Eide said.