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Defying warnings of punishment from Washington, reports The New York Times,
North Korea launched a rocket on Sunday that Western experts believe is part of a program to develop intercontinental ballistic missile technologies. …
President Park Geun-hye of South Korea called an emergency meeting of top national security advisers on Sunday to address the launch, her office said. South Korea, the United States and Japan also requested an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council.
In Washington, Secretary of State John Kerry called the launch a “major provocation, threatening not only the security of the Korean Peninsula, but that of the region and the United States as well.” Susan E. Rice, the national security adviser, said it was “a flagrant violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions.” …
With the launch, North Korea was also defying its main ally, China. China has resisted the United States’ move to place tough sanctions on the North since a Jan. 6 nuclear test, fearing that it might destabilize its neighbor. But it has also admonished North Korea not to conduct more nuclear and missiles tests and sent a senior envoy to Pyongyang recently.