Six Security Council members condemn North Korea's missile tests

European members of UN Security Council describe North Korea's recent missile tests as "provocative actions."

Elad Benari ,

UN Security Council
UN Security Council

The European members of the UN Security Council on Tuesday condemned North Korea's recent missile tests and described them as "provocative actions."

Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany, Poland, and the United Kingdom said in a statement quoted by AFP that they "are deeply concerned by the repeated testing of missiles, using ballistic missile technology" by North Korea on March 2, 9, 21 and 29.

The Europeans noted that Pyongyang has conducted 17 sets of such launches since May of 2019.

The launches illustrate North Korea's "continued efforts to develop its ballistic missile programs and expand its arsenal, including of short-range ballistic missiles," adding that Pyongyang "has also continued to operate its nuclear weapon program."

North Korea is under multiple sets of sanctions from the United Nations, United States and others over its banned weapons programs.

"It is vital that the Security Council ensures full implementation of its resolutions and that sanctions remain in place," the statement read.

In its most recent test on Sunday, Pyongyang said it successfully tested "super-large multiple rocket launchers".

South Korea said two projectiles -- presumed to be ballistic missiles -- were fired from the North Korean port city of Wonsan into the Sea of Japan, also known as the East Sea.

The recent tests by Pyongyang came amid a prolonged hiatus in disarmament talks with the United States.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump engaged in months of mutual insults and threats of devastation in 2017, sending tensions soaring before a diplomatic rapprochement the following year.

The pair have met three times since June 2018, most recently in Vietnam in February, but with little progress towards denuclearization.

Since those talks broke down, North Korea has conducted several tests of ballistic missiles.

Pyongyang set a unilateral end-2019 deadline for Washington to offer fresh concessions. In his New Year’s message after his ultimatum to the US expired, the North Korean leader said his country would continue developing nuclear programs unless the US gave up its hostile approach.

In late January, North Korea said it is no longer bound by commitments to halt nuclear and missile testing.