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N Korea rocket launch would be provocative: Seoul

SEOUL (AFP): North Korea's plan to launch a long-range rocket would breach a United Nations resolution and be a "grave, provocative act", South Korea said Friday.

The North announced earlier in the day that it would launch the rocket between April 12-16 to put a satellite into orbit and mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of founding president Kim Il-Sung.

Seoul's foreign ministry expressed "grave concerns" in a statement.

It said such a launch would clearly breach UN Security Council resolution 1874 "and constitute a grave, provocative act threatening peace and security on the Korean peninsula and the northeast region".

The South urged its neighbour "to immediately stop this provocative act and abide by international obligations including the UNSC resolution".

It said it would closely consult other members of stalled six-nation talks on the North's nuclear disarmament to try to avert the launch. The talks group the two Koreas, Japan, Russia, China and the United States.


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