Seven key countries have agreed on a draft U.N. Security Council resolution that would impose tough new sanctions -- including a total weapons ban -- against North Korea.
The draft resolution, copies of which were obtained by journalists, condemns North Korea's test as a violation of previous U.N. resolutions and imposes additional sanctions.
Those sanctions would include expanding an arms embargo against North Korea, strengthening financial sanctions, as well as encouraging countries to impose tighter inspections of North Korean cargo shipments. China reportedly resisted making the cargo provision mandatory.
The draft is the product of weeks of negotiations by the five permanent members - the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia - with Japan and South Korea.
The seven countries submitted the draft on Wednesday for discussion by the full 15-member Security Council, which is expected to put the resolution to a vote by the end of the week.
After the meeting, U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice said the draft resolution would send a very strong and credible response to the North Korean test.
Russia's U.N. envoy said the seven countries agreed on the sanctions with what he called a "heavy heart." But Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said measures must be taken because of a real risk of proliferation.
In other news, U.S. President Barack Obama's nominee for assistant secretary of state for East Asian affairs said the United States will not accept a nuclear North Korea. Nominee Kurt Campbell told lawmakers at a confirmation hearing that Washington is prepared to resume talks on North Korea's nuclear disarmament.
The U.S. envoy to the six-nation denuclearization talks, Stephen Bosworth, said Tuesday that North Korea's claim that its actions are a response to hostile U.S. policies is groundless. Bosworth said the United States has no intention of invading North Korea or using force to change its government.
Pyongyang's May 25 nuclear test, followed by the test-firing of a series of short-range missiles, triggered international condemnation.
U.S. officials have indicated that Washington may also impose unilateral financial sanctions against North Korea.