Seoul Sees Headway in Efforts to Win U.N. Response to N. Korea Launch

South Korea and partners on the U.N. Security Council have achieved headway in talks on various options for responding to North Korea's December firing of a long-range rocket, which they say violated council restrictions against Pyongyang's use of ballistic missile technology, the Yonhap News Agency reported on Thursday.

"Discussions are under way among member states, particularly permanent members, of the Security Council, and I cannot tell you that a conclusion would be made within one or two weeks, but I can tell you that there has been significant progress," South Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho Tai-young said.

The spokesman said Seoul would not commit itself to securing a U.N. response within a certain time period. An unidentified South Korean diplomat earlier this week was reported to have said the government's goal was to see action taken against Pyongyang this month.

Offering a different assessment of internal Security Council discussions, Kyodo News on Thursday reported that veto holder China continues to balk at enhancing economic punishments against North Korea. Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Li Baodong last week said countries should note North Korean ruler Kim Jong Un's New Year's address, which called for more engagement and an end to hostilities with the South.

The 15-member U.N. body last month said the North's Dec. 12 space rocket firing violated council resolutions; no other formal deliberations are understood to have occurred since then, according to Kyodo.

January 10, 2013
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South Korea and partners on the U.N. Security Council have achieved headway in talks on various options for responding to North Korea's December firing of a long-range rocket, which they say violated council restrictions against Pyongyang's use of ballistic missile technology, the Yonhap News Agency reported on Thursday.

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