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UPDATE 1-U.N. Security Council to discuss North Korea on Monday after ICBM launch

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(Adds U.S. statement, details)

Nov 18 (Reuters) – The United Nations Security Council will discuss North Korea in a meeting on Monday at the request of the United States after Pyongyang tested an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of reaching the U.S. mainland.

A statement from the U.S. mission to the United Nations said the 15-member Security Council has a responsibility to protect global peace and security and the nonproliferation regime and to uphold its own resolutions.

“We urge all Security Council members to take this responsibility seriously and unite in condemning the DPRK’s dangerous and unlawful behavior,” it said referring to North Korea by the initials of its official name.

“Relevant Security Council resolutions must be fully implemented, and the DPRK must be held accountable for violating them,” it added.

A senior U.S. administration official said earlier that North Korea’s latest missile test earlier on Friday was of a type that “that can hit many, many countries.”

The official said Washington was in regular contact with China, which along with Russia has blocked recent U.S. efforts to strengthen U.N. sanctions on North Korea over its missile tests.

North Korea’s state media said the country’s leader Kim Jong Un oversaw Friday’s launch and pledged to counter U.S. nuclear threats with nuclear weapons.

Friday’s launch came after U.S. President Joe Biden met his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on Monday and said Beijing has an obligation to try to talk North Korea out of resuming nuclear testing, while adding that it was unclear whether China would be able to sway Pyongyang.

China and Russia backed toughened sanctions after North Korea’s last nuclear test in 2017, but in May both vetoed a U.S.-led push for more U.N. penalties over its renewed ballistic missile launches.

Washington has accused China and Russia of enabling North Korea’s weapons programs by failing to enforce existing sanctions.

U.S. State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel told a regular briefing on Friday that China “has a responsibility to make clear to the DPRK that Pyongyang should not engage in unlawful nuclear or ballistic missile tests.” (Reporting by Daphne Psaledakis and David Brunnstrom; Editing by Daniel Wallis)

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