Tokyo, Aug 24 (IANS) Hours after North Korea launched a ballistic missile from a submarine, the Foreign Ministers of Japan, South Korea and China appealed for compliance with UN imposed sanctions against Pyongyang over its weapons tests.
The message was voiced by Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida at a press conference that followed a trilateral meeting with his South Korean and Chinese counterparts, Yun Byung-se and Wang-Yi, respectively.
The missile, launched by a North Korean submarine from the country’s eastern coast around 5.00 a.m. on Wednesday, flew around 500 km before falling into the sea — some 500 km from the Japanese coast — making it Pyongyang’s most successful ballistic missile test till date, Efe news agency reported.
At the briefing, Kishida said the three ministers agreed to lead the international response due to continuing provocations by North Korea, including promotion of compliance with UN Security Council sanctions brought in after it conducted a nuclear test and launched a long-range missile in January and February, respectively.
The Japanese minister said the latest act of defiance by Pyongyang “cannot be tolerated”.
The meet also addressed matters of economic cooperation and disaster management and the three ministers also agreed to begin preparations for a trilateral leaders’ summit at the end of 2016.
It will be the first such summit since 2012, when ties between the three neighbours began deteriorating due to territorial conflicts and the assessment of Japan’s role before and during the Second World War when it colonised the Korean peninsula and part of China.