Statement on North Korea's move towards a rocket launch

February 22, 2010 7:17 PM

(Unofficial translation)

March 13, 2009


Statement on North Korea's move towards a rocket launch

North Korea has been making preparations for the launch of what appears to be a Taepodong-2 ballistic missile and announced yesterday, March 12, that it had notified the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) of its plan to launch a satellite between April 4 and 8.

Whatever pretext North Korea may give, it should refrain from any action which undermines the peace and stability of the North East Asian region including Japan. Any action of this nature would be extremely regrettable.

Even if the object to be launched is a booster-rocket for a satellite, as North Korea claims, given that launch vehicles for satellites and ballistic missiles are based on common technology, this launch clearly runs contrary to the Japan-DPRK Pyongyang Declaration of 2002 and is also in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 1695 and 1718, which called for the suspension of all activities related to North Korea's ballistic missile program. There is no acceptable reason for this launch.

Furthermore, North Korea's inflexible attitude is an affront to the long-standing effort toward the peaceful resolution of North Korea's nuclear development issue made through the system of the Six-Party Talks. North Korea should seriously reconsider its actions. 

North Korea's announcement to launch is extremely regrettable. I sincerely hope that North Korea will listen to the wishes of the international community and reconsider its decision.

KONO Taro
Member of the House of Representatives
Chairman, Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs
Parliament of Japan

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