Conflicts & War

North Korean missile test ‘undesirable’ for dialog revival: Moon

Seoul, Mar 26 (efe-epa).- North Korea’s ballistic missile tests are “undesirable” amid attempts to revive the stalled denuclearization dialog, South Korea’s president said Friday.

At a defense ceremony in Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometers south of Seoul, Moon Jae-in said “actions providing difficulty for the mood for dialog are undesirable.”

“I’m aware the people are greatly concerned by the North’s missile test-firings. Now is the time for South and North Korea and the United States to work to continue our dialog,” he added at an event to mark the 11th anniversary of the sinking of the corvette ROKS Cheonan, which an international investigation determined was hit with a North Korean torpedo.

It was the first time Moon had publicly addressed Pyongyang’s testing of two short-range ballistic missiles on Thursday.

Moon also stressed that South Korea, which is still technically at war with the North, is prepared to defend itself while also respecting the principle of a nuclear-free peninsula.

The missiles tested by the North appear to be a new version of the KN-23, resembling the Russian Iskander, and which Pyongyang said is capable of carrying a 2.5-ton warhead.

The KN-23 has a sophisticated guidance system that allows it to trace trajectories that are not completely parabolic or ballistic, which makes it difficult to intercept and a serious threat to nearby countries such as South Korea and Japan.

Thursday’s launch was North Korea’s first ballistic missile test since US President Joe Biden came to power in January and is in violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions.

It comes at a time marked by a review, commissioned by Biden, of the strategy with which Washington plans to deal with Pyongyang, which has demanded a return to the denuclearization dialog without preconditions but has ignored US attempts at establishing contact.

On Thursday, Biden raised Washington’s tone against the regime, warning that “there will be responses if they choose to escalate.” EFE-EPA


Related Articles

Back to top button