Unidentified object flies over North Korean border

The members expressed "their utmost concern over the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's highly destabilizing behavior and flagrant and provocative defiance of the Security Council", in the joint press statement, calling the North's latest missile launch a violation of its worldwide obligations under six UNSC resolutions that have been passed since 2006.

There was no immediate comment in North Korea's state-run media, and no reports that the North had returned fire.

USA officials have been far less sanguine about the test of a long-range KN-17, or Hwasong-12, missile just over a week ago, which U.S. officials believe survived re-entry to some degree.

In 2014 South Korean officials claimed several North Korean drones had crossed the border.

At the request of the US, Japan and South Korea the Security Council will meet behind closed doors on Tuesday (May 23) to discuss North Korea's actions.

"The DPRK's self-defensive measures to protect its dignity and vital rights, and genuine peace from the United States' escalating nuclear threat are the legitimate rights of a sovereign state", Ju said.

He warned that no option is off the table in dealing with the North's weapons program, although Washington has so far opted for sanctions and diplomatic pressure, while looking to China, the North's closest ally, to help rein in Pyongyang.

The military said it had sent a warning to Pyongyang and increased its air surveillance in response to the incident.

"South Korean and USA intelligence authorities believe North Korea has secured meaningful data in enhancing the credibility of its missile technology". It said data was recorded by a device mounted on the warhead.

Unidentified object flies over North Korean border

On Monday, Pyongyang also unveiled photos of the Earth taken by a camera mounted on the ballistic missile, and the move is being interpreted as an attempt to demonstrate its mastery over missile atmospheric re-entry technology. "Supreme leader Kim Jong Un said it feels grand to look at the Earth from the rocket we launched and the entire world looks so handsome", KCNA said.

The South Korean military has reportedly fired shots at the unidentified object - thought to be a missile or drone - flying across the border from the North.

It traveled about 310 miles (500 kilometers) before landing in the Sea of Japan, according to South Korea's armed forces.

"Entering mass production this early in the development phase is risky, but perhaps a risk North Korea feels comfortable managing", said Michael Elleman of the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

Solid fuel missiles can be fired far more rapidly, dramatically shortening the time available for any attempt to intervene and prevent a launch. "The Kill Chain already accounts for the time required to fill missiles with fuel. We continue to monitor North Korea's actions closely".

South Korea's new President Moon Jae-In speaks during a press conference at the presidential Blue House in Seoul on May 10, 2017.

The North's continued testing activities are in open defiance of Security Council resolutions, said Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, in a daily news briefing Monday.

That makes it even harder to detect signs of a missile launch in advance, prompting concerns that this would incapacitate South Korea's Kill Chain, which is supposed to carry out a preemptive strike within 30 minutes of indications that North Korea is going to launch a missile.

A senior Japanese official said his country would target the reclusive state's foreign currency earnings.

  • Leroy Wright