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UN Security Council Passes Resolution Sanctioning North Korea

  • VOA News

The U.N. Security Council has unanimously passed a resolution imposing sanctions on North Korea for conducting an apparent nuclear test.

The vote came less than a week after North Korea announced it had set off a nuclear device underground.

The resolution includes weapons and economic sanctions including a travel ban and financial restrictions. It specifically rules out the use of force in what is seen as a concession to China and Russia.

Following the vote, the North Korean ambassador expressed disappointment. He reiterated that North Korea had conducted a nuclear test on Monday. He said it was in reaction to what he called a threat from the United States.

Multiple Council members said U.N. sanctions should be withdrawn if North Korea agrees to return to six-party talks on its nuclear program.

The U.S. and British ambassadors stressed that the sanctions target Pyongyang and not the people of North Korea.

Also, the Chinese ambassador underscored that his nation does not approve of cargo inspections that are an element of the resolution. Diplomats have said the issue was a sticking point in negotiations.

In related news, South Korea and Japan say they have not detected any radioactivity to confirm North Korea's claim that it conducted an underground nuclear test last Monday.

Late Friday, unnamed U.S. officials said U.S. aircraft had detected traces of radiation in air samples collected near the suspected North Korea test site. But they stressed no final determination had been made.

North Korea is threatening to carry out more nuclear tests. Pyongyang has said it would regard any tough new sanctions as a declaration of war.

In Washington, President Bush signed a law allowing the United States to impose sanctions on any foreigner who provides weapons technology to North Korea.

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