UN strongly condemns North Korean missile launch after delay

Nick Mcbride
April 21, 2017

Russian Federation has derailed a proposed UN Security Council statement that would have condemned North Korea's latest missile launch test, using its veto to torpedo the motion.

United Nations diplomats said the proposed statement had consensus from the other 14 Council members, including China, North Korea's biggest ally and a Council permanent member.

The statement demanded that Pyongyang conduct no further nuclear tests and "immediately cease further actions in violation" of Security Council resolutions placing sanctions on the reclusive country's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

"The ball is in their court", Ambassador Nikki Haley told reporters.

Haley's comments followed President Donald Trump's recent statement that the US wants peace — and that how much North Korean ruler Kim Jong Un also wants peace will be a deciding factor in easing tensions between the two countries. "I think we were able to get the right elements into it, and it was a very clear message, so I'm really happy that this has come out", he said.

Moscow had blocked an earlier version of the statement - which comes after North Korea carried out a failed test on Sunday - even though China, Pyongyang's ally, had expressed its support for it. In a statement on its website, the Russian Mission to the United Nations asserted that the US cut off negotiations when Russia proposed to reinsert language on dialogue. "They shouldn't try to play it at this point".

North Korea will definitely be in the U.N. spotlight on April 28 when U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson presides at a Security Council meeting where U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will brief members on the North's nuclear program.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres separately said "everything" must be done to confront the threat from North Korea and ensure that its missile and nuclear programs do not pose an global threat.

"We have said it as clearly as we can possibly say it".

The failed test last Saturday came amid a period of high tension, as United States apparently tried to pressure Pyongyang to forego its nuclear and missile programs under threat of military intervention.

One diplomat said it was unlikely the Security Council would be able to resolve differences on the statement.

"The U.K. supports that, 14 members of the Security Council support that".

Other reports by VgToday

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