and now the korean dance begins

  1. 375 Posts.
    As much as I would like to see the UN have a real constructive role in the world, it seems its inability to reach consensus when it is really needed is its real Achille's Heel.

    So now the dance begins over North Korea.

    UN still split on N Korea
    By Edith M. Lederer in New York
    April 09, 2003

    THE major Security Council powers failed to agree on a statement condemning North Korea's nuclear program because of opposition from China, which has close ties to Pyongyang, diplomats said.

    The five permanent council members – the US, Russia, China, Britain and France – met at France's UN Mission ahead of today's meeting of the 15-member council to discuss North Korea's nuclear weapons program.

    For weeks, China had refused to attend meetings of the four other veto-wielding council members to discuss a statement pushed by the US that would condemn North Korea for pulling out of the international nuclear arms control treaty.

    China's UN Ambassador Wang Yingfan did attend yesterday's meeting.

    "We hope that the council would react constructively on this issue," he said.

    But council diplomats said Mr Wang was reluctant to discuss a statement that would condemn North Korea.

    North Korea insists on direct talks with the US on the nuclear dispute and has said it would consider any sanctions imposed by the Security Council as a declaration of war.

    US President George W. Bush's administration wants to settle the crisis through multilateral channels, saying North Korea's nuclear program threatens not just US interests but also those of Russia, China, Japan and South Korea.

    China has been trying to bring Washington and Pyongyang together, and in mid-March Mr Wang said he did not want the Security Council to be involved.

    Last week, he expressed hope that today's council meeting would lead to a political solution but council diplomats said they saw little hope of any movement.

    A more fruitful possibility was some sort of multilateral meeting that Chinese and US officials had been discussing, which would give the US and North Korea an opportunity for talks on the sidelines, the council diplomats said.

    The US pressed for the International Atomic Energy Agency to refer the North Korean nuclear issue to the Security Council after Pyongyang announced on January 12 it was withdrawing from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, the global agreement to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.

    The IAEA decided at an emergency meeting on February 12 to refer North Korea to the council, saying it was not complying with nuclear safeguard agreements.

    The Associated Press
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