The United States strongly condemns North Korea’s November 21 launch of a space launch vehicle, or SLV, using ballistic missile technology, in violation of multiple UN Security Council resolutions, said U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield. The very next day, Pyongyang launched another ballistic missile. In addition to launching three SLVs this year, North Korea has launched 29 ballistic missiles, including four ICBMs.
“And now a North Korean reconnaissance satellite has been confirmed in orbit,” said Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield in recent remarks before the UN Security Council. “The DPRK is unabashedly trying to advance its nuclear weapons delivery systems by testing ballistic missile technology in clear violation of this Council's resolutions. This reckless, unlawful behavior threatens all of the DPRK’s neighbors and all member states.”
North Korea is undermining the authority of the Security Council and “how we respond ... ultimately determines our credibility,” declared Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield. But two Security Council member nations, Russia and China, have been unwilling to condemn this dangerous escalatory launch and others like it:
“Russia is expanding its military relationship with the DPRK, which by Putin's own admission, could include helping the DPRK build more satellites like the one launched last week. And our information indicates that the DPRK has provided Russia with more than 1000 containers of military equipment and munitions that will be used to support Russia's brutal war in Ukraine. Colleagues. How many more times must we gather for briefings like this before Russia and China join us in demanding the DPRK abandon its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs?”
The United States continues to call for dialog with North Korea without preconditions. “The DPRK can choose the time and the topic, but the DPRK needs to make that choice,” declared Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield.
She further urged the Security Council to “speak out once again to encourage the DPRK to focus less on stocking an arsenal and more on stocking the pantries of the DPRK people, who suffer from severe economic hardship and malnutrition and accept the UN's offer of support, to urge the DPRK to engage in diplomacy, and to exercise our responsibility to maintain international peace and security and uphold the global nonproliferation regime.”