Countries concerned over North Korea's ballistic missile launch

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(VOVWORLD) -The foreign ministers of South Korea, the United States and Japan on Saturday expressed concern after North Korea test-fired an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on the same day. 

According to the Japanese Foreign Ministry, during a trilateral meeting on the sidelines of the ongoing Munich Security Conference, Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Foreign Minister Park Jin shared the view that North Korea repeatedly testing ballistic missiles poses a serious threat.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell reiterated the EU's request that North Korea halt ballistic missile tests and move to constructive dialogue with the US and South Korea. He said the EU is willing to support the new diplomatic process.

North Korea confirmed it had test-fired an ICBM on Friday. The Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said the missile test launch was part of an emergency combat readiness drill, which was held suddenly without prior notice at the discretion of the Chairman of the Central Military Commission of the Workers' Party Kim Jong-un on the morning of the same day.

North Korea's second ballistic missile launch in 2023 took place as South Korea and the United States are staging a joint military exercise. Pyongyang launched a short-range ballistic missile on January 1.