Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:32AM
United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley (R) arrives for a UN Security Council meeting on North Korea, February 13, 2017. (Photo by AP)
United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley (R) arrives for a UN Security Council meeting on North Korea, February 13, 2017. (Photo by AP)

North Korea has rejected the United Nations Security Council (UNSC)’s condemnation of its recent missile test launch, citing a “sovereign right” to such tests.

The North Korean Foreign Ministry defended the recent test-launch of the intermediate-range ballistic missile in a statement on Wednesday.

“We flatly reject the UN Security Council statement that raises issues with a sovereign state’s right to self-defense,” the statement read. “We do not accept the resolution by the UN Security Council that bans our nuclear test and missile launch test, and we never will.”

In an emergency meeting on Monday, the UNSC called on its 15 member states to “redouble their efforts” to fully implement the sanctions already imposed on North Korea for its missile and nuclear programs.

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley also called on the members states to “hold North Korea accountable — not with our words, but with our actions.”

An undated photo of the test-fire of the Pukguksong-2 by North Korea (Via Reuters)

A spokesman for the UN secretary-general also denounced the North’s missile launch, saying the move was “a further troubling violation of Security Council resolutions.”

After the test, the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un, “expressed great satisfaction over the possession of another powerful nuclear attack means, which adds to the tremendous might of the country.”

The North already faces international pressure to abandon its arms development and nuclear program. Yet, it says the programs aim to protect the country from US hostility.

The US has military forces in South Korea and is planning to deploy an advanced missile system there in response to perceived threats from the North. The US also occasionally deploys nuclear-powered warships and aircraft capable of carrying atomic weapons in the region.