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Nations Unite to Ward Off Nuke Test

Posted October. 09, 2006 07:08,   


As the intelligence from the U.S and Japan says that North Korea is about to conduct a nuclear test, international efforts to prevent the North from carrying out the plan are underway including Summit talks between Korea-Japan, Korea-China and China-Japan.

The Korean government reportedly sent a message to the North through an unknown channel during the Chuseok holidays that it would take tough measures including putting a halt to Mt. Geumgang tourism and Gaesong Industrial Complex project if the North pushes ahead with a nuclear test.

President Roh is scheduled to have summit talks with Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo in Seoul on October 9 and with Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing on October 13 to discuss measures to prevent North’s plan.

Before Roh has summit talks, Seoul’s top nuclear negotiator, Chun Young-woo will visit Beijing and have a consultation on how China can pressure and persuade the North not to engage in a nuclear test.

Christopher Hill, the chief U.S. negotiator for six party talks and the assistant secretary of state for East Asia and the Pacific Affairs warned in an interview on October 5 saying, “If Kim Jong Il pushes ahead with a nuclear test, it will be the biggest mistake.”

When Hill was asked about the possibility of military sanctions on the North, he said, “At this stage I don’t want to say what options the U.S. would take.” This is noteworthy in that he usually excludes possibilities of military options.

According to the Japanese press, Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Yachi Shotaro visiting Washington met with U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor Jack Crouch and discussed how to inspect North Korean vessels suspected of loading nuclear materials in and around Korean waters.

Response from the UN-

The UN Security Council adopted a chairman’s statement urging the North to abandon its nuclear test plan on October 6 (local time).

The statement called for the North not to conduct a nuclear test that is a clear threat to international peace and security and not to engage in any actions that can heighten tensions and warned that the UNSC would take corresponding measures if the North ignores the warning and carry out its plan.

That means the UNSC will ask all the UN members to stop economic and diplomatic relations with the North and pass a UN resolution under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter meaning that military force could be used against the North.

North Korea’s Preparations for a Nuclear Test-

The Washington Post reported on October 8 that it is possible for the North to carry out the test on October 8, the anniversary for Kim Jong Il’s inauguration as the general secretary of Labor Party and on October 10, an anniversary for the foundation of Labor Party.

However a Korean government official said on the same day, “Those reports specifying exact date for the potential nuclear test are just speculations. There is no evidence to support those reports.” He added, “We contacted with related nations and assessed current situation, but still we haven’t seen the scene that the North is physically preparing for a nuclear test.

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