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N. Korea criticizes Trump adviser Bolton for missile test remarks

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton speaks to reporters at Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's office in Tokyo, on May 24, 2019. (Kyodo)

BEIJING (Kyodo) -- North Korea on Monday criticized U.S. President Donald Trump's national security adviser John Bolton for concluding that Pyongyang's recent test-firing of missiles was a violation of U.N. resolutions, according to state-run media.

An unnamed North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman was also quoted by the Korean Central News Agency as saying that Bolton is a "war fanatic" who clearly has different ways of thinking than ordinary people.

North Korea fired projectiles on May 4 and short-range ballistic missiles on May 9 in an apparent attempt to coax Washington into making concessions in denuclearization negotiations.

The spokesman said U.N. Security Council sanctions resolutions prohibiting North Korea from launching any type of ballistic missiles completely deny the country its right to self-defense, adding that Pyongyang is not constrained by resolutions it considers illegal.

North Korea has argued that the strike drills conducted this month, including missile launches, are part of regular military training.

Speaking to reporters in Tokyo on Saturday, Bolton said North Korea's launch of short-range ballistic missiles was a violation of Security Council resolutions.

But in sharp contrast, Trump tweeted Sunday that North Korea fired off "some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me," indicating that there are divided views on the issue in the U.S. administration.

Trump is visiting Tokyo for four days through Tuesday for talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. North Korea was high on the agenda during the talks Monday.

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