U.S., China in deal on U.N. North Korea rebuke; Russia to back it
By Louis Charbonneau
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United States and China have struck a tentative deal on a draft U.N. Security Council resolution condemning North Korea for its December rocket launch, U.N. diplomats said on Friday, and Russia predicted it would be approved by the council.
The resolution would not impose new sanctions, but would call for expanding existing U.N. sanctions measures against Pyongyang, the envoys said on condition of anonymity. They added that China's support for the move would be a significant diplomatic blow to Pyongyang.
The 15-nation council could adopt the compromise resolution next week, they said.
Russian U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin confirmed the diplomats' comments in remarks quoted by the Russian state-run RIA Novosti news agency, saying that adoption was likely early next week.
"I expect we will support it," RIA quoted Churkin as saying. "I don't expect that the U.N. Security Council members will have any serious problems (with the resolution)."
"Our position is that the North Korean rocket launch is a violation of a U.N. Security Council resolution, so the council should react," he said.
South Korean Ambassador Kim Sook told reporters that the draft might take a few days to reach the council.
The United States had wanted to punish North Korea with a U.N. Security Council resolution that imposed new sanctions against Pyongyang, but Beijing rejected that option. Continued...