North Korea has warned the UN Security Council against criticising its missiles programme, telling the body it should think of the "consequences".
During an emergency closed-door meeting of the top UN body on Friday, France circulated a proposed statement that expressed concern over North Korea’s missile launches and called on it to fully implement council resolutions that ban its ballistic missile firings.
On Sunday, Jo Chol Su, a senior North Korean foreign ministry official, warned the UN council it “had better think what consequences it will bring in the future in case it tries to encroach upon the sovereignty” of North Korea.
Mr Jo also accused the UN body of a “double-dealing standard” because it does not equally take issue with similar weapons tests by the United States and its allies, according to his statement.
After a six-month hiatus, North Korea resumed missile tests in September, launching newly developed missiles including nuclear-capable weapons that place South Korea and Japan, both key US allies, within striking distance.
The country still offered conditional talks with South Korea, in what some experts called an attempt to pressure Seoul to persuade Washington to relax crippling economic sanctions on it.
Under multiple UN Security Council resolutions, North Korea is banned from engaging in any ballistic missile activities as the country aims to mount nuclear weapons on its ballistic missiles.
North Korea has argued its nuclear programme is meant to cope with US military threats, though Washington has said it has no hostile intent toward Pyongyang.
Despite its recent launches, North Korea maintains a 2018 self-imposed moratorium on a long-range missile directly threatening the American homeland, a sign that it still wants to keep alive chances for future diplomacy with the US.
US officials have urged North Korea to return to talks without preconditions, but the North has said it will not do so unless the Americans drop their “hostile policy” – an apparent reference to the sanctions and regular military drills between Washington and Seoul.