In this December 12, 2012 file photo South Koreans watching a television report on North Korea's rocket launch are reflected in a TV screen at Seoul railway station in Seoul.

United Nations - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday strongly condemned North Korea's missile launch and expressed concern that it could negatively impact prospects for peace and security in the region.

“The Secretary-General deplores the rocket launch announced by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea),” Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky said in a statement.

“It is a clear violation of Security Council resolution 1874, in which the Council demanded that the DPRK not conduct any launch using ballistic missile technology,” the statement said.

Nesirky said Ban has been urging North Korea's leaders not to launch a missile but “instead to build confidence with its neighbours while taking steps to improve the lives of its people.”

“The Secretary-General is concerned about the negative consequences that this provocative act may have on peace and stability in the region,” the statement said, adding that Ban was in touch with “concerned” governments. - Reuters