North Korea defied international warnings and launched its long-range rocket that the UN and and other countries specially the United States calls as a cover for a banned test of an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) that could strike the U.S. mainland.

South Korean officials confirmed the launch, Sunday morning. It follows North Korea’s widely disputed claim last month to have tested a hydrogen bomb.

Washington considered it as a further provocation and the U.S. and its allies are likely to draw more sanctions and condemnation from the United Nations.

The United States has vowed to defend itself and its allies following the rocket launch of North Korea, on Sunday it vowed to take all necessary actions and called on the international community to show Pyongyang that its “reckless action must have serious consequences.”

“North Korea’s launch using ballistic missile technology … represents yet another destabilizing and provocative action and is a flagrant violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions,” U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice said in a statement.

“North Korea’s missile and nuclear weapons programs represent serious threats to our interests - including the security of some of our closest allies,” she said. “We condemn today’s launch.”

-John Esconde