Permanent UNSC members, Japan, S. Korea drafting resolution on North

Ambassadors of the five permanent U.N. Security Council members plus Japan and South Korea met Tuesday to draft a resolution on North Korea's second nuclear test, U.N. diplomatic sources said.

The seven countries have already agreed to issue a resolution on Monday's North Korean action, which sparked global condemnation as violating Resolution 1718 banning the country from all ballistic missile and nuclear activity.

The ambassadors from the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China, as well as Japan and South Korea, apparently tried to coordinate their stance on the draft resolution, being prepared by Japan and the United States.

The 15-member Security Council is believed to be aiming for the resolution's adoption by the end of the week, when Russia's monthly council presidency expires, the sources said.

Japan is a nonpermanent council member and South Korea is a nonmember.

The source said earlier the draft resolution would call for additional sanctions and reinforcing existing sanctions on North Korea.

The Security Council president issued a statement Monday saying the latest nuclear test by Pyongyang constitutes ''a clear violation'' of Resolution 1718. The resolution was adopted in October 2006 after North Korea's first nuclear test.

The 15 council members ''have decided to start work immediately on a Security Council resolution on this matter in accordance with the Security Council's responsibilities under the Charter of the United Nations,'' the statement said.

China and Russia are apparently cautious about additional sanctions as these could hamper efforts to resume the stalled six-party talks on denuclearizing North Korea. The six-party talks involve the two Koreas, the United States, China, Japan and Russia.

Japan's hope for the Security Council adopting a resolution after Pyongyang's rocket launch April 5 was dashed mainly in the face of opposition from veto-wielding Security Council members China and Russia.

Instead, on April 13, the Security Council adopted a less powerful presidential statement on the rocket launch that Japan and many other countries believe was a disguised test-firing of a long-range ballistic missile. North Korea claims the launch put a satellite into orbit.

(Distributed by Kyodo News on May 26, 2009)

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