N. Korea slams U.S., U.N. for addressing human rights violations, missile provocation

SEOUL, March 19 (Yonhap) -- North Korea on Sunday criticized the United States and the United Nations for having raised the issue of Pyongyang's human rights problem recently at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the regime's missile provocation, according to the North's state media.

On Friday, the U.S. co-hosted an informal meeting highlighting the human rights violations in the reclusive nation at the UNSC. U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also condemned the North's recent test-launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile as a violation of UNSC resolutions on the same day.

In response to the meeting, the North's mission to the U.N. said in a statement that Pyongyang "will counter the illegal 'human rights' campaign by the U.S. and its followers with the most powerful means," according to the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

The mission said it defines the "pressure campaign" as a violation of the dignity and sovereignty of the North, and "resolutely denounces and rejects it," according to the KCNA.

On Guterres' statement, Pyongyang's foreign ministry accused the secretary-general of "adding fuel to the flames" and "far from helping easing the tension in the Korean Peninsula and the region," according to the KCNA.

"I think it is good for defusing tension and for himself that the U.N. secretary-general remains silent rather than meddling in the Korean Peninsula issue as now," Kim Son-gyong, the North's vice foreign minister for international organizations, said in a separate statement.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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