Archive for Thursday, July 6, 2006

China, Russia resist sanctions over N. Korea missile tests

Communist nation prepares for more rocket launches

July 6, 2006


North Korea has three or four more missiles on launch pads and ready for firing, major South Korean newspapers reported today.

The missiles are either short- or medium-range, reported Chosun Ilbo, one of South Korea's largest dailies. It cited an unidentified senior South Korean official.

Another major paper, JoongAng Ilbo, carried a similar report.

The North has also barred people from sailing into some areas off the coast until July 11 in a possible sign of preparations for additional launches, Chosun Ilbo said.

North Korea test-fired seven missiles on Tuesday and Wednesday, triggering international condemnation.

But Wednesday, China and Russia resisted an attempt in the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions against North Korea for its missile launches, saying only diplomacy could halt the isolated regime's nuclear and rocket development programs.

Japan, backed by the U.S. and Britain, circulated a resolution that would ban any country from transferring funds, material and technology that could be used in North Korea's missile and weapons of mass destruction programs.

China, the North's closest ally, and Russia, which has been trying to re-establish Soviet-era ties with Pyongyang, countered that they favor a weaker council statement without any threat of sanctions. Both countries hold veto power in the council, making sanctions unlikely.

North Korea, which has proclaimed itself a nuclear weapons state, has said sanctions would amount to a declaration of war. China and Russia are clearly concerned that a U.N. demand for such measures would only make the current situation worse and delay a return to six-party talks. China and Russia are part of the talks along with North and South Korea, the United States and Japan.

In a possible sign that Moscow's and Beijing's position may carry the day, President Bush addressed the issue in a subdued manner without the harsh warnings that he had issued as recently as last week when he said that a missile launch would be unacceptable.

Bush said Wednesday that the failure of North Korea's long-range missile test does not lessen the need to push the communist regime to give up its nuclear weapons program.

"One thing we have learned is that the rocket didn't stay up for very long," Bush said about the Taepodong-2 missile that failed 42 seconds after liftoff Tuesday. "It tumbled into the sea."

"It doesn't diminish my desire to solve this problem," he said in Washington.

The failure of the Taepodong-2 missile - the object of intense international attention for more than a month - suggested a catastrophic failure of the rocket's first, or booster, stage.

The North also fired six shorter-range missiles on Tuesday and Wednesday, arguing it had the right to such launches. All of them apparently fell harmlessly into the Sea of Japan.


geekin_topekan 11 years, 10 months ago

Oh,please. N.Korea poses no threat to the US or any other country. This is a total non-issue designed to cover up the fact that W. can't maintain order and that the world is in fact a more dangerous place than it has ever been. The UN sanctions and a call to the world community would have been heard loud and clear under competent leadership.Today they shrug and say "Your way has proven to be ineffective and we will not jump." Constant coverage of this totally irrelevent event and the one's that will continue to unfold is pure arrogance that has made the US the most hated country on Earth.N.Korea wants to talk.iran wants to talk.But US policy won't allow diplomacy. This is a fear based,rally the falling party media circus that anyone with more than a morel for a brain should ignore.

Christine Pennewell Davis 11 years, 10 months ago

wow I bet south korea might have something to say about that.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.