UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations Security Council will meet publicly on Friday over North Korea's failed attempt to launch a new military reconnaissance satellite, which the United States described as "reckless and destabilizing behavior."

North Korea said the launch ended in failure on Monday when a newly developed rocket engine exploded in flight. North Korea then fired what appeared to be a ballistic missile, the Japanese government said on Thursday.

"The Security Council has a responsibility to protect global peace and security," said Nate Evans, spokesperson for the U.S. Mission to the U.N. "The United States urges all Security Council members to take this responsibility seriously and unite in condemning the DPRK's dangerous and unlawful behavior."

"Relevant Security Council resolutions must be fully implemented, and the DPRK must be held accountable for violating them," he said.

Formally known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), North Korea has been under U.N. sanctions for its ballistic missile and nuclear programs since 2006, and those measures have been strengthened over the years.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said space reconnaissance capabilities are crucial for national self defense against enemy threats and the country will never give up the fight to own that ability, state media said on Wednesday.

For the past several years the U.N. Security Council has been divided over how to deal with Pyongyang. Russia and China - veto powers along with the U.S., Britain and France - have said more sanctions will not help and want such measures to be eased.

China and Russia say joint military drills by the United States and South Korea provoke Pyongyang, while Washington accuses Beijing and Moscow of emboldening North Korea by shielding it from more sanctions.

(Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Richard Chang)

By Michelle Nichols