Dec 12 2012
Foreign Secretary William Hague has strongly condemned the launch of a long-range rocket by North Korea, which he said will increase tensions in the region.
North Korea fired the rocket in a second launch under its new leader Kim Jong Un, South Korean officials said, defying warnings from the UN and Washington.
The rocket was fired from a west coast launch pad on Wednesday morning, according to South Korean defence officials, but it is not known if the rocket was successful.
Mr Hague said it was a "clear violation" of UN Security Council resolutions because it involved the testing of ballistic missile technology.
He said this morning: "I strongly condemn the DPRK's (Democratic People's Republic of Korea) satellite launch today. This provocative act will increase tensions in the region.
"I deplore the fact that the DPRK has chosen to prioritise this launch over improving the livelihood of its people.
"We will be summoning the DPRK ambassador to the UK to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the UK will urgently consult partners in the United Nations Security Council on our response to this development.
"It is essential that the DPRK refrain from further provocative action and take constructive steps towards denuclearisation and lasting peace and stability on the Korean peninsula."
North Korea, under Kim Jong Un, has pledged to bolster its nuclear arsenal unless Washington scraps what Pyongyang calls a hostile policy.
Japan said debris from the rocket landed in seas off the Korean peninsula and the Philippines.