UN Security Council to gather over North Korea launch

United Nations Security Council to hold an emergency meeting to talk over North Korean rocket launch after requested by United States, Japan and South Korea

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) will hold an emergency meeting on Sunday to discuss the problematic North Korean rocket launch as requested by the US, Japan, and South Korea, the UN press office stated.

The meeting will start at 11 a.m. (1600 GMT) at UN headquarters in New York, the United Nations said in a statement.

Following the occurrence, the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon condemned the rocket launch and urged it to stop “its provocative actions," according to Ban's press office.

"It is deeply deplorable that [North Korea] has conducted a launch using ballistic missile technology in violation of relevant Security Council resolutions on 6 February 2016 despite the united plea of the international community against such an act," the office said.

North Korea fired a long-range rocket earlier on Sunday, carrying what it has stated is a satellite, South Korea's Defence Ministry said, despite United Nations sanctions banning it from having ballistic missile technology.

According to US Strategic Command, the rocket was detected at 6:29 pm CST (0129 GMT Sunday) and tracked over a southerly launch on the Yellow Sea.

The command added that it believed to be a Pyongyang missile launch into space.

After the incident, the US Secretary of State John Kerry repeated the US Defense commitment to Japan and South Korea and underlined that they will work with UNSC for “significant measures” against North Korea’s attempts.

Meanwhile, the US National Security Advisor Susan Rice said in a statement that the US will take all necessary actions to save itself and its allies in the region.

"North Korea's launch using ballistic missile technology ... represents yet another destabilising and provocative action and is a flagrant violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions," Rice said.

"North Korea's missile and nuclear weapons programmes represent serious threats to our interests - including the security of some of our closest allies," she stated.

"We condemn today's launch."

South Korean President Park Geun-hye also said North's action on Sunday was "an unforgivable act of provocation" and called on the UNSC to rapidly approve strong sanctions.

Japanese public broadcaster, NHK, reported that Japan did not take action to shoot down the rocket launched by North Korea on Sunday, even though it appeared over the Japan's southern Okinawa prefecture.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that the launch of the "missile" was intolerable.

Meanwhile, Taiwanese officials also said its security had not been threatened by North Korea's rocket.

TRTWorld and agencies