SEOUL-- South Korea on Sunday denounced the failed test-launch of an unidentified missile by North Korea that came amid rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
Seoul's Foreign Ministry said in a statement that North Korea's ballistic missile firing was in a clear violation again of UN Security Council resolutions, expressing its strong denunciation against the provocation.
Pyongyang fired an unidentified missile at about 6:20 a.m. local time (2120 GMT Saturday) from its eastern coastal city of Sinpo, but it was believed to have exploded on launch, according to South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The South Korean military said it was still analyzing what kind of missile was launched.
On April 5, North Korea test-fired a ballistic missile at a nearby region on its east coast, but it plunged into the sea off the east coast after abnormally flying about 60 km.
At the time, the South Korean military identified it as Pukguksong-2, an intermediate-range ballistic missile known to be newly developed based on a technology of submarine-launched ballistic missile. The US military estimated it to be an extended-range Scud missile that is known to be capable of traveling as far as 1,000 km.
The South Korean Foreign Ministry depicted the botched missile launch as a grave threat to peace and security in the peninsula and the international community, saying North Korea's regime would face hard-to-endure punitive actions if it conducts strategic provocations such as another nuclear test or the launch of intercontinental ballistic missile.
To mark the 105th anniversary of the birth of North Korea's founder Kim Il Sung, a massive military parade was held in the center of Pyongyang on Saturday.
Pyongyang paraded a series of military arsenal, including what were believed to be three types of intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Tensions tended to escalate on the peninsula this spring when combined forces of the United States and South Korea staged their joint war games, codenamed Key Resolve and Foal Eagle that were scheduled to continue till the end of this month.
Pyongyang has denounced the US-South Korea military exercises as a dress rehearsal for northward invasions.
The US nuclear-powered Carl Vinson aircraft carrier was approaching the peninsula after participating in the joint war games last month.
US Vice President Mike Pence is set to arrive in South Korea later Sunday for his trip to Asia.
Pence is scheduled to meet with South Korean Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn, who is serving as acting president, on Monday.
South Korea's top presidential advisor for security affairs, Kim Kwan-jin, convened a meeting of national security council at the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae on Sunday morning.
The security council meeting was attended by ministers of foreign affairs, unification and defense as well as intelligence agency chief and senior presidential secretary for security and foreign affairs.
Source: Philippines News Agency