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Top diplomats of S. Korea, Japan lash out at N. Korea's ICBM test

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (front) celebrates after a Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) was launched from Pyongyang International Airport on Thursday, in this photo released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency. (Yonhap)
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (front) celebrates after a Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) was launched from Pyongyang International Airport on Thursday, in this photo released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency. (Yonhap)

The top diplomats of South Korea and Japan on Friday condemned North Korea's firing of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) and urged it to cease provocative acts, Seoul's foreign ministry said.

Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong talked over the phone with his Japanese counterpart, Yoshimasa Hayashi, after the North confirmed it successfully test-fired a new ICBM on Thursday under the direct order of its leader Kim Jong-un.

The officials pointed out the North's latest missile test is a clear violation of UN Security Council resolutions and a move to scrap its self-imposed moratorium on the ICBM testing that had been in place since late 2017, according to the ministry.

They agreed the ICBM launch poses a "grave threat" to regional and global security that needs to be dealt with using "firm responses" and vowed close cooperation with the United States for additional measures by the UN Security Council, the ministry said.

On Friday, First Vice Minister Choi Jong-kun also had phone talks with Wendy Sherman, the US deputy secretary of state, and Japan's Vice Foreign Minister Takeo Mori to discuss the North's latest missile test, it added. (Yonhap)

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