Tuesday, January 22, 2013


N Korea 'to boost nuclear programme' after UN sanctions

North Korea says it will boost its military power and "nuclear deterrence" programme after the UN imposed new sanctions over a rocket launch.
North Korea also ruled out any further nuclear talks.
The country would "take physical actions" to strengthen its military force, the state news agency KCNA said.
The UN Security Council approved new sanctions over the December test launch of what it said was a long-range missile banned by UN resolutions.
The three-stage rocket put a satellite into space in what was Pyongyang's first successful test of such technology.
The Security Council banned North Korea from missile tests after nuclear tests conducted in 2006 and 2009.
The UN resolution adds new individuals and North Korea's space agency to lists of existing sanctions, diplomats said.
'Talks rendered null'
Over the past decade, North Korea has been in talks with the US, South Korea, China, Russia and Japan, promising to end its nuclear programme in return for energy and economic aid.
But on Wednesday, a foreign ministry statement carried by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency read: "Due to the US's worsening policy of hostility toward North Korea, the six-party talks were rendered null and the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula was put to an end.
"We will take measures to boost and strengthen our defensive military power, including nuclear deterrence," the ministry added.
The statement came only hours after the UN Security Council unanimously approved the new sanctions. The resolution was the result of a compromise deal between the US and China, North Korea's closest ally.
The US had called for new sanctions to punish Pyongyang, the BBC's Barbara Plett reports from the UN in New York.
China had initially simply wanted a statement expanding the blacklist, but eventually agreed this could be done in the form of a resolution, which carries more legal weight, our correspondent adds.
Diplomats said China's support for the resolution was a blow to North Korea.
China, which is North Korea's biggest trading partner, had consistently called for a cautious response.
Before the vote, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said that China had been participating "constructively" in discussions at the UN.
"We feel regret that the Democratic People's Republic of Korea [North Korea] went ahead with the launch amid widespread concerns by the international community," he said, according to state-run China Daily.
"At the same time we believe that any response by the United Nations Security Council should be prudent, moderate, and conducive to peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula, and should prevent the situation from escalating further."
Monday's resolution said the Security Council expressed its "determination to take significant action in the event of a further DPRK [North Korean] launch or nuclear test".
Susan Rice, the US ambassador to the UN, said North Korea would pay "an increasingly steep price" if it chose confrontation with the international community.

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