North Korea Says U.S. Is 'Hitting at Its Own Foot With an Ax' by Holding 'Provocative' UN Security Council Meeting

North Korea has condemned the U.S. decision to call a United Nations Security Council meeting, at which the American envoy called on other nations to "act accordingly" in response to threats or provocation from Pyongyang.

A North Korea foreign ministry spokesperson delivered a colorful evaluation of the UN meeting, describing the U.S. decision to convene it as a "provocative act," according to the Yonhap news agency.

Talks on denuclearization and sanctions relief between the U.S. and North Korea remain stalled, despite multiple meetings between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un. For all of Trump's bravado, little of note has been achieved despite the historic detente between the two adversaries.

Multiple rounds of talks have failed, and it appears increasingly unlikely that the two sides will reach an agreement before the end of Trump's first term.

Kim has set an end-of-year deadline for the U.S. to break the deadlock with a new negotiating strategy, and in the meantime has resumed regular testing of short- and medium-range missiles.

Pyongyang has returned to its characteristic aggressive rhetoric, and on Thursday issued a scathing response to American efforts to unite the UNSC against potential provocations from the North.

"We will never tolerate the U.S. for fostering the mood of pressure against North Korea by spearheading the UNSC public meeting that discussed our problem at such a sensitive time as right now," the North Korean official said, according to Yonhap.

"The U.S. took a stupid act like hitting at its own foot with an ax by holding the meeting," the official continued.

"It has also given us decisive help in making up our mind clearly on which way we will take."

The veiled threat will increase tensions ahead of the deadline, with reports suggesting Pyongyang may be preparing to test a major missile test. Pyongyang recently promised a "Christmas gift" for the U.S. if the standoff continues.

The U.S. has been working closely with South Korea to monitor the Dongchang-ri test site northwest of Pyongyang, where the North claimed to have conducted a "very important" test last week.

Since the thaw in relations with the U.S., Kim has refrained from testing intercontinental ballistic missiles or nuclear warheads. Trump, apparently keen to preserve what he considers a foreign policy win, had been willing to overlook the other weapons tests despite protests from senior aides and regional American allies.

North Korea, missile test, United Nations, US
This file photo shows a television broadcast reporting the North Korean missile launch at the Seoul Railway Station on October 31, 2019 in Seoul, South Korea. Woohae Cho/Getty Images/Getty