US President Donald Trump says North Korea ‘has signaled its contempt for its neighbours, for all members of the United Nations and for minimum standards of acceptable international behaviour’. He added that after Pyongyang’s latest missile launch over Japan ‘the world has received North Korea’s message loud and clear’.
A White House Statement said that ‘all options are on the table’ to deal with North Korea.
It comes after North Korea fired a missile over Japan drawing anger from its neighbours and marking a sharp escalation of tensions in the region.
Japan’s warning system kicked in urging people in the north of the country to take cover.
The Japanese military did not attempt to shoot down the missile which broke into three pieces and fell into waters off Hokkaido.
Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe said his government had been fully aware of the missile’s movement immediately after it was launched and had been taking every measures to secure people’s lives. “This missile poses a serious and grave threat and it greatly damages regional peace and stability.”
North Korea has conducted dozens of ballistic missile tests under leader Kim Jong-Un, the most recent on Saturday, but firing them over mainland Japan is rare.
Earlier this month, North Korea threatened to fire missiles into the sea near the US Pacific territory of Guam after President Donald Trump warned Pyongyang would face “fire and fury” if it threatened the United States.
Tokyo has called for increased pressure to be brought to bear on Pyongyang and the UN Security Council is to meet in emergency session later Tuesday.