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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that the firing
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that the firing by North Korea of a missile of any kind would be a "provocative act."

North Korea announced plans last month to launch what it says is a communications satellite from the newly constructed Musudan-ri launch pad on the country's northeast coast. However, the U.S., Japan and South Korea believe that the secretive communist state is in fact planning to test its Taepodong-2 long-range missile.

Speaking to journalists in Mexico City, Clinton said Washington would consider the firing of a missile by North Korea a violation of a UN Security Council resolution that forbids the country from undertaking ballistic activity. She also said that any missile launch could have consequences for six-nation talks on North Korea's nuclear program. The talks involve the two Koreas, the United States, Russia, China and Japan.

"We have made it very clear that the North Koreans pursue this pathway at a cost and with consequences to the six-party talks, which we would like to see revived," Clinton said.

"We intend to raise this violation of the Security Council resolution, if it goes forward, in the U.N.," she said. "This provocative action in violation of the U.N. mandate will not go unnoticed and there will be consequences."

The UN Security Council passed Resolution 1718 on October 14, 2006, which forbids North Korea from conducting further nuclear tests or launches of ballistic missiles.

North Korea tested the Taepodong-2 missile in July 2006, but it malfunctioned around a minute after take-off.

Japan has said more than once that it is ready to intercept the North Korean rocket if it appears to threaten the country's security. South Korea has also called on its neighbor not to launch a missile, saying it would be a "serious challenge."


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