No action against North Korea by UN Security Council (Lead)

April 6th, 2009 - 8:05 am ICT by IANS  

New York, April 6 (DPA) An emergency session of the United Nations Security Council ended without action Sunday after Japan and the US demanded a resolution in response to North Korea’s launching of a high-altitude rocket.
The 15-country Security Council held a closed session to discuss the action, which Pyongyang claimed was a satellite launch. The US and other powers have questioned the claim by saying no satellite was being placed into orbit. They called the launch a ballistic missile test.

After the meeting ended Sunday evening, Security Council President Claude Heller told reporters that member delegations planed to continue talks late Sunday. It was not clear when another formal meeting might be held.

The missile launch defied appeals by North Korea’s neighbours in Asia and countries around the world to refrain.

Susan Rice, US ambassador to the UN, called North Korea’s action a “clear-cut violation” of past Security Council resolutions, regardless of whether a payload existed or was put into orbit. Another resolution would be “the most appropriate response for an action of this gravity,” she said.

“We need a clear and strong response from the Security Council,” Rice said.

Japanese Ambassador Yukio Takasu also called for a “clear, firm and unified response”.

“Thank god, nothing fell on Japan, but it doesn’t change the situation,” he said. “It was a clear sign of (North Korea’s) intention and a threat for peace and security - not only for Japan.”

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