North Korea to boost nuclear deterrent after U.N. rebuke

Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:36am EST
 
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By Louis Charbonneau

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council unanimously condemned North Korea's December rocket launch and expanded existing U.N. sanctions, and Pyongyang reacted with a vow to boost the North's military and nuclear capabilities.

While the resolution approved by the 15-nation council on Tuesday does not impose new sanctions on Pyongyang, diplomats said Beijing's support for it was a significant diplomatic blow to Pyongyang.

The resolution said the council "deplores the violations" by North Korea of its previous resolutions, which banned Pyongyang from conducting further ballistic missile and nuclear tests and from importing materials and technology for those programs.

It also said the council "expresses its determination to take significant action in the event of a further DPRK (North Korean) launch or nuclear test".

North Korea reacted quickly, saying it would hold no more talks on the de-nuclearization of the Korean peninsula and would boost its military and nuclear capabilities.

"We will take measures to boost and strengthen our defensive military power including nuclear deterrence," its Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency KCNA.

The United States' special envoy on North Korea, arriving in Seoul on Wednesday to meet his South Korean counterparts, urged Pyongyang to back down from further provocative actions but left the door open for dialogue.

"If they can... begin to take concrete steps to indicate their interests in returning to diplomacy, they may find willing partners in that process," Glyn Davies told reporters.   Continued...

 
The Unha-3 (Milky Way 3) rocket carrying the second version of Kwangmyongsong-3 satellite, is launched at West Sea Satellite Launch Site in Cholsan county, North Pyongan province, December 12, 2012 in this picture released by the North's KCNA news agency in Pyongyang early December 14, 2012. REUTERS/KCNA