North Korea fires missiles, UN envoy says it has right to test weapons

South Korea says an unidentified projectile was fired early Tuesday morning, the third such launch this month.

North Korea fired at least one projectile into the sea early Tuesday, the South Korean military said, adding that Pyongyang’s envoy had recently told the United Nations that it had the right to test weapons because of its “hostile” policy against the country.

South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said at least one unidentified project was launched at sea off North Korea’s east coast on Tuesday.

This is the third launch this month after Pyongyang previously tested a “strategic” cruise missile and a railway portable ballistic missile.

The JCS did not immediately provide details about Tuesday’s launch, including whether the projectile was a ballistic missile banned under a UN Security Council resolution, how far it flew and where the launch took place, the Yonhap news agency reported.

The launch comes shortly after North Korean envoy Kim Jong Un addressed the organisation’s annual meeting in New York.

Kim told the UN that Pyongyang has the right to build weapons and that it would not endanger the security of the United States, South Korea and neighboring countries, and was responding to US “hostile” policies.

“We are only building our national defense so that we can defend ourselves and reliably protect the security and peace of the country,” he said.

He added that if the United States gave up its hostility, North Korea would respond voluntarily at any time.

“But it is our judgment that at the present stage the United States has no possibility of withdrawing its adverse policy.”

U.S. administration Joe Biden has reviewed his North Korea policy and said it is ready to negotiate with Pyongyang at any time. Talks on nuclear disarmament have stalled since the 2019 summit between then-President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un broke down.

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