The Philippine government on Wednesday voiced "grave concern" and branded as "unacceptable" the plan of North Korea to launch a satellite this April.
In a statement posted on its website, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) cited United Nations Security Council resolutions against North Korea's use of ballistic missile technology.
"We express grave concern over the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK's) announced plan to launch a satellite between April 12 and 16 which we find unacceptable," it said.
It said UN Security Council Resolution 1874 in 2009 "explicitly demands" that the DPRK not conduct any launch using ballistic missile technology.
The same resolution along with UNSC Resolution 1718 (2006) also decided that the DPRK "suspend all activities related to its ballistic missile program," it added.
"We strongly urge the DPRK not to proceed with its planned launch and abide by these resolutions, which call for the abandonment of its ballistic missile programme in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner," the DFA said.
It added the Philippines joins other governments in urging the DPRK to adhere to its recent pledge for a moratorium on long-range missile launches, together with nuclear tests, and uranium enrichment activity.
"The DRPK's return to confidence-building and engagement with the international community is key to the continued stability and prosperity of the Korean Peninsula and the entire Asia-Pacific region," it said.
Earlier, North Korea vowed to launch a satellite from a long-range missile despite the protests of what it called “hostile forces” including the US, Japan, and South Korea.
The launch virtually coincides with the April 15 centennial of the birth of founding leader Kim Il-sung, and may set the course for another cycle of international recriminations while the North refuses to talk seriously about giving up its nuclear program.
North Korea defended its defiance of demands by the US and others to cancel the launch as exercise of its “right to use space for peaceful purposes," the Christian Science Monitor reported.
On the other hand, the launch is seen to undermine stalled six-party talks on reaching a deal for North Korea to abandon its nuclear program.
The talks, chaired by China, including envoys from the US, Japan, Russia, and North and South Korea, were last held in Beijing in December 2008.
North Korea last test-fired a long-range missile in April 2009 and conducted its second underground nuclear test the next month.