President Lee Myung-bak promptly convened an emergency meeting of the National Security Council after the North Korean rocket blasted off.
After the meeting, a government statement, read by Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan said that the launch was a clear violation of UN resolutions 1874 and 1718 and that it poses a threat to the peace and security of not only the Korean Peninsula, but the entire world.
[Interview : Kim Sung-hwan, Korean Foreign Minister] "Our government, along with the international community, strongly condemns North Korea for pushing ahead with such a provocation, for ignoring continuous warnings and calls for a withdrawal of the launch by the international community."
Seoul stressed that Pyongyang will have to take responsibility for the act, in accordance with a presidential statement that was adopted by the UN Security Council in April.
The South Korean government made it clear that the North will be further isolated from the international community for pushing ahead with the launch, and urged the North to stop wasting its money on developing nuclear weapons and missiles and instead use it to help the North Korean people, who are in desperate need.
The South Korean government also added that it will continue to keep a close eye on the Northand will work closely with the international community to formulate a response to Wednesday's launch.
[Reporter : Eoh Jin-joo
firstname.lastname@example.org] "A high-ranking official at the presidential office said, the launch was widely expected and that there is no need to be agitated by the act as the government and Cheong Wa Dae are calmly following a set of guidelines they have prepared in advance for various scenarios.
Eoh Jin-joo, Arirang News."
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