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Russia 'firmly' condemns new North Korea missile launch

Moscow however refused to support tougher measures like an oil embargo and Washington had to soften its stance in order to secure the backing of Russia and China, the North's strongest backers.

Published: 15th September 2017 04:36 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th September 2017 04:36 PM   |  A+A-

Acting in response to North Korea's missile launch, in this photo provided by South Korea Defense Ministry, South Korea's Hyunmoo II ballistic missile is fired during an exercise at an undisclosed location in South Korea. | AP

Acting in response to North Korea's missile launch, in this photo provided by South Korea Defense Ministry, South Korea's Hyunmoo II ballistic missile is fired during an exercise at an undisclosed location in South Korea. | AP

By AFP

MOSCOW: Russia on Friday condemned a new missile launch by North Korea that came days after the United Nations Security Council imposed fresh sanctions on Pyongyang over its sixth nuclear test.

"Russia is deeply concerned by the latest provocative launches which lead to a further escalation of tensions on the peninsula," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. 

"We firmly condemn the continuation of such provocative actions," he said.

North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan and into the Pacific on Friday, responding to new UN sanctions with what appeared to be its furthest-ever missile flight amid high tensions over its weapons programme.

The launch came after the UN Security Council imposed an eighth set of sanctions on the Stalinist regime following its sixth nuclear test earlier this month.

The UN Security Council called a new emergency meeting for later Friday.

Russia on Monday backed the new sanctions against North Korea, banning it from trading in textiles and restricting oil imports.

Moscow however refused to support tougher measures like an oil embargo and Washington had to soften its stance in order to secure the backing of Russia and China, the North's strongest backers.

The United States on Thursday called on China and Russia to take "direct actions" to rein in North Korea after it fired a ballistic missile over Japan into the Pacific.

"China supplies North Korea with most of its oil. Russia is the largest employer of North Korean forced labor," Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said in a statement.

Russian foreign ministry spokesman Maria Zakharova on Friday accused Washington of "aggressive rhetoric."

"We demonstrate that we not only do not tolerate the illegal launches but also have a desire to settle the situation on the Korean peninsula," Zakharova said on radio.

"Unfortunately, only aggressive rhetoric can be heard from Washington."



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