North Korea’s foreign minister called U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres “a puppet of the United States” for issuing a condemnation of the ICBM launch by North Korea on Friday.
According to the government-run KCNA news agency, the “new missile” was a Hwasong-17, that flew a distance of 999.2 km.
Guterres had issued a statement strongly condemning the launch and calling on North Korea to “immediately desist from taking any further provocative actions.”
In response to the statement issued by Guterres, Korean Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui issued a statement criticizing the Secretary-General’s “deplorable attitude.” According to Choe, Guterres’ statement was “oblivious of the purpose and principles of the UN Charter and its proper mission to maintain impartiality, objectivity, and equity in all matters” and “clearly demonstrates that he is a puppet of the United States.”
Over the past two months, nuclear-armed North Korea has fired more than 50 missiles. According to Japan’s defense minister, the latest launch on Friday had enough range to hit the U.S. mainland. The long-range ballistic missile was fired at Japan on the morning of November 18, from near the North Korean capital, Pyongyang.
ANALYSIS: North Korea's latest ICBM test is concerning for Washington.
"Extrapolated, the Hwasong-17 would easily range 15,000 kilometers with a standardized 500-kilogram payload, allowing it to strike all targets in the continental U.S.," writes @nktpndhttps://t.co/kkaY2Gq3b9
— NK NEWS (@nknewsorg) November 21, 2022
The United States, Britain, France, and India were among 14 nations to “strongly condemn” this latest launch by North Korea. On Monday, U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said that the United States would be “proposing a presidential statement to this end.”
The Security Council was unable to adopt a resolution in May because of the opposition of China and Russia, who seem likely to block any upcoming resolution as well.
North Korea called the launch another “reliable and maximum-capacity” weapon to contain U.S. military threats. The North Korean leader Kim Jong Un observed the launch, also choosing the moment as the first public viewing of his “beloved daughter,” which was interpreted by some as a sign to the world that North Korea had no intention of giving up its nuclear plans.
According to KCNA, Kim blamed intensifying US military threats for North Korea’s need to strengthen its “nuclear deterrence.”
Vice President Kamala Harris convened an emergency meeting with leaders from several nations, including South Korea. After the meeting, she stated that the leaders “strongly condemn” the launch.
There are multiple UN Security Council resolutions that ban North Korea from conducting ballistic missile tests of any range.