New Zealand condemns North Korean missile launch

Other News Materials 5 April 2009 14:21 (UTC +04:00)

New Zealand joined international condemnation of North Korea's satellite launch on Sunday, saying it had not helped efforts to build peace and stability in the region, dpa reported.

  "North Korea's actions are provocative, despite their claim that the satellite launch was for peaceful, scientific purposes," Foreign Minister Murray McCully said in a statement.

  He said the launch ran contrary to clear messages given to North Korea by United Nations Security Council resolutions following missile and nuclear tests in 2006.

  The resolutions required North Korea to suspend its ballistic missile programme and to restrain from actions that might aggravate tensions.

  "It is clearly a backwards step after promising signs last year that North Korea was moving towards denuclearisation under the Six Party Talks framework," McCully said.

  "The New Zealand government believes it is in the best interests of all parties for Pyongyang to focus on meeting the commitments it has already agreed to during the Six Party Talks process, and to refrain from further actions that only create greater unease and suspicion," he said.