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Russian President Vladimir Putin warns West to 'stop intimidating North Korea'

Russian President Vladimir Putin warns West to 'stop intimidating North Korea'

The country launched a new type of missile into the sea of Japan earlier this week, and South Korean Defence Minister Han Min-koo told Parliament the test was "successful in flight".

"This is the longest-range missile North Korea has ever tested [other than space launches]", Jeffrey Lewis, of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in the U.S. said.

In a unanimously agreed statement, the 15-member council said it was of vital importance that North Korea shows "sincere commitment to denuclearisation through concrete action and stressed the importance of working to reduce tensions".

In a unanimous statement backed by China, the council vowed strong measures in response to Pyongyang's "highly destabilizing behavior" and demanded a halt to "further nuclear and ballistic missiles tests". The adoption of the statement comes on the eve of an emergency, closed-door meeting of the Security Council scheduled for Tuesday.

Our top story this morning The United Nations Security Council is gearing up to roll out new sanctions against North Korea and boost the enforcement of existing ones following the regime's recent missile launch. It is believed that North Korea is carrying out launch tests with "lofted" trajectories to test the longer range capabilities of its new missiles without triggering a potential shoot down from the United States or Japan.

"It is considered an IRBM (intermediate range ballistic missile) of enhanced caliber", he said, referring to a class of missile created to travel up to 3,000 to 4,000 km (1,860 to 2,485 miles).

North Korea has released launch video of what is believed to be a risky and new long range ballistic missile, which it claims is capable of carrying a "heavy nuclear warhead".

Although Moscow has expressed concern about Pyongyang's broadening nuclear capabilities, it's one of the few countries with diplomatic ties to North Korea. That suggests a range of 4500km or more, analysts said.




North Korean leader Kim Jong Un inspects a Hwasong-12 in an undated photo released by the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Monday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said the test was unsafe, but warned against attempts to "intimidate" Pyongyang.

Beijing is wary of piling on economic pressure that could cause North Korea's collapse, and it wasn't clear Monday if it would support new sanctions.

But, he added: "We must stop intimidating North Korea and find a peaceful solution to this problem".

"I want to confirm that we are categorically against the expansion of the club of nuclear powers, including with the Korean peninsula and North Korea", said Putin, who said any such move would be "harmful and dangerous".

North Korean leader Kim declared in a speech on New Year's Day that his country's program to build inter-continental ballistic missiles had "reached its final stage". The USS Carl Vinson, an aircraft carrier, is also engaging with South Korean navy ships in waters off the Korean Peninsula, according to Seoul's Defense Ministry.

North Korean news reports are often exaggerated - Pyongyang has threatened for decades to reduce Seoul to a "sea of fire", for instance - but Monday's claim, if confirmed, would mark another advance toward the North's goal of fielding a nuclear-tipped missile capable of reaching the USA mainland.


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