The United States urged the world "to put pressure" on North Korea

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RUSSIAN Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has rejected the USA call to cut ties with North Korea after Pyongyang launched ballistic missiles on Wednesday.

"We have repeatedly stated that the pressure of sanctions has been exhausted", he told reporters in Minsk.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has accused the U.S. of seeking to provoke North Korea into stepping up its nuclear missile programme.

"The Americans need to explain to us all if they want to find a pretext to destroy North Korea".

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov dismissed the call by the US Permanent Representative to the UN Nikki Haley to sever ties with North Korea and said "sanctions do not work".

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"First thing, President Donald Trump's strangulation campaign, to cut off money flows to North Korea will actually have a great effect on the regime".

Russian news agencies quoted Lavrov as saying: "If somebody is very eager to use force to wipe out North Korea, as the United States' UN envoy said, it was a very bloodthirsty tirade".

"The Russian delegation delivered its position of condemning the missile launch, but the North Korean representatives refuted the statement, and said the measures were necessary to respond to US threats", Chepa said, adding North Korea is conducting tests to "achieve a balance of power" with its rivals.

It wasn't immediately clear if North Korea's most recent missile test actually showed that Pyongyang could deliver such a payload, as it wasn't clear what was on the missile, but experts said it showed they were on their way.

Trump's spokeswoman Sarah Sanders later clarified that the United States is not seeking regime change in North Korea, but is focused on the "denuclearization" of the Korean peninsula. "They've proposed a freeze-for-freeze solution a number of times, in which the US would suspend its military exercises in exchange for North Korea suspending its missile testing and nuclear development", Armstrong told ThinkProgress.

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Speaking at the UNSC on Wednesday, Haley warned that North Korea's government will be "utterly destroyed" if a war breaks out. "I don't think anybody likes a military solution. U.N. Security Council measures".

"We always think that this is going to be a conflict with the United States and South Korea and Japan on one side and North Korea on the other". She was part of a delegation of Russian lawmakers just back from a visit to North Korea. "We will not be taken by surprise".

Responding to the United States request for an embargo, the Chinese foreign ministry said merely that the country had "always implemented full, comprehensive, serious and strict resolutions". "We have the impression that it was all done specially to get Kim Jong Un to "fly off the handle" and 'take another reckless step, '" he said, according to Reuters. The UN also barred the hiring of North Korean guest workers and capped exports of refined petroleum products.

The US has been demonstrating to North Korea its military might by staging a number of exercises in the region, some jointly with its allies South Korea and Japan.

"They have extended the range now out to a point that it is hard to credibly argue that North Korea couldn't have the U.S. eastern seaboard within its range", Vipin Narang, associate professor of political science at MIT, told the BBC.

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