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    US, EU Demand Action on North Korea's Rocket Launch

    The United States and European Union are urging the world to take action after North Korea launched a rocket in defiance of United Nations resolutions.

    In a joint statement, the world powers accused Pyongyang of developing a ballistic missile capability to threaten countries with weapons of mass destruction.

    They called for an international response to demonstrate that U.N. Security Council resolutions can not be defied with impunity.

    Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N., says Washington believes the most appropriate response would be a new resolution.

    The Security Council will meet Sunday (1900 UTC) to discuss how to respond to North Korea's action.

    North Korea says it sent a satellite into orbit as part of a peaceful space program, and that the device is broadcasting revolutionary music over Earth.

    The U.S. military says no object entered orbit. 

    It says part of the missile fell into the Sea of Japan, while the rest flew over Japanese territory and landed in the Pacific Ocean.

    Tokyo says it will extend its economic sanctions against North Korea. The sanctions were imposed after North Korea tested ballistic missiles and a nuclear device in 2006.

    Japanese Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone says he discussed the implications of Sunday's launch in a telephone call with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

    State Department officials say Clinton also phoned the foreign ministers of Russia and China to discuss North Korea's actions.

    Russia and China are permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, and two of the few governments with diplomatic ties to North Korea. They called Sunday for calm and restraint.

     

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