US Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday reaffirmed the "ironclad" US commitment to the security and defence of Japan and South Korea, following the satellite launch by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).
Kerry spoke separately via phone with South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida regarding the launch by the DPRK using ballistic missile technology, Xinhua quoted State Department spokesman John Kirby as saying.
The earth observation satellite blasted off at 9:00 am local time on Sunday from the Sohae Space Centre in Cholsan County, North Phyongan Province, and later entered the target orbit, the Korean Central Television (KCTV) reported.
Kerry condemned the launch as a violation of multiple UN Security Council Resolutions that threatened international peace and security, and he emphasised the importance of a united international response to DPRK's provocations, including through a strong UN Security Council Resolution.
He also noted the vital importance of continued close communication and cooperation among the US, Japan, and South Korea in addressing the threats posed by the DPRK.