United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Sunday condemned North Korea’s latest nuclear test calling it a breach of international obligations that destabilises the region.
“This act is yet another serious breach of the DPRK’s (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’s) international obligations and undermines international non-proliferation and disarmament efforts,” his spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said.
“This act is also profoundly destabilizing for regional security.”
“The DPRK is the only country that continues to break the norm against nuclear test explosions,” he added.
Any UN action against Pyogyang hinges on its veto-powered patron China, which can block the Security Council from acting.
North Korea carried out a nuclear test on Sunday morning – its sixth and the most powerful so far.
The regime of dictator Kim Jong-un said the hydrogen bomb could be fitted on a missile.
North Korea has recently tested ballistic missiles that have the potential to reach major cities in the US. Last week Pyongyang sent a ballistic missile over Japan.
The UN Security Council has repeatedly condemned North Korea’s missile and nuclear programmes, and on August 5 tightened sanctions banning exports of coal, iron, iron ore, seafood and lead, and prohibiting countries from hiring any more of that country’s citizens.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron called for actions against Pyongyang by the Security Council and the European Union.
In the region, Australia and South Korea have released statements demanding even more stringent sanctions by the Security Council.
(Arul Louis can be reached at [email protected])