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G8 Foreign Ministers Urge N.Korea to Cancel Rocket Launch

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The G8 foreign ministers have urged North Korea to honor its commitments and cancel the launch of its rocket later this week, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday.

The G8 foreign ministers have urged North Korea to honor its commitments and cancel the launch of its rocket later this week, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday.

“We urge the North Korean leadership to honor its agreements and refrain from pursuing a cycle of provocation,” Clinton said after a meeting of G8 foreign ministers in Washington.

North Korea says the rocket will put a weather satellite into orbit to mark the 100th anniversary of the country's founder, Kim Il-sung. It also says the launch is in compliance with the Space Treaty, which guarantees every state the right to carry out space programs. But the international community suspects the rocket is part of a ballistic missile program.

Clinton said that “there is no doubt that this [launch] would use ballistic missile technology.”

“If Pyongyang goes forward [in launching the rocket] we will all be back in the Security Council to take further action,” she said at a news conference.

The United States, Japan and South Korea consider the launch as being in contravention of international obligations under UN Resolution 1718 and 1874, forbidding North Korea from carrying out ballistic missile test launches.

Under a deal signed in February, Pyongyang agreed to suspend uranium enrichment, as well as nuclear and long-range missile tests in return for U.S. food aid.

 

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