View Full Version : U.S. May Push U.N. to Punish North Korea

06-05-2005, 12:22 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050605/ap_on_re_as/rumsfeld_asia;_ylt=AkUOlW1jhHpPjqRDbiuoWbis0NUE;_y lu=X3oDMTA2MTQ3MTFjBHNlYwN0cw--

U.S. May Push U.N. to Punish North Korea

By MATT KELLEY, Associated Press Writer

BANGKOK, Thailand - The Bush administration may ask the United Nations to punish North Korea for refusing to return to international talks about its nuclear weapons program, Pentagon officials say.

Such a move would signal the failure of the six-nation talks aimed at persuading the communist country to abandon its nuclear ambitions.

Since the discussions broke off last June, North Korea has claimed that it possesses nuclear weapons and has rebuffed calls to resume bargaining. The other countries involved in the talks are China, Japan, Russia and
South Korea.

At an Asian security conference in Singapore over the weekend, U.S. and Japanese officials floated the possibility of sending the matter to the U.N. Security Council for consideration of economic penalties and other punishments.

North Korea has said it would interpret U.N. penalties as an act of war. But it is not clear whether North Korea actually would consider military action or whether the statement was just more of the country's harsh rhetoric.

The U.S. plans to decide by month's end what to do next about North Korea, according to a senior defense official traveling with Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, said the administration was seriously considering idea of referring the matter to the Security Council.

Rumsfeld told reporters on his trip that U.S. policy on North Korea is under review. He would not offer further details.

Japan's defense chief, Yoshinori Ono, said at the security conference on Saturday that taking the issue to the United Nations was possible if the U.S., China, Japan, Russia and South Korea agreed that was the best option.

Rumsfeld also raised the possibility, saying the world is threatened by North Korea's nuclear weapons.

"It would require, certainly, the United Nations to ask itself, does it want to have a role in trying to avoid allowing the kind of proliferation that is threatened?" Rumsfeld said during a question-and-answer session at the security conference.

South Korea has resisted the U.N. option, asking instead for more time to persuade North Korea to resume negotiations.

South Korea's defense minister, Yoon Kwang-ung, repeatedly reminded officials at the conference that his country has the most to lose from a North Korean attack. He said he hoped for progress when a South Korean delegation visits the North for talks this month.

The senior U.S. defense official said the U.S. does not see much hope for progress because North Korea has rejected the proposal from the last round of talks and has not agreed to further discussions.

The official said the administration is worried that North Korea's nuclear claim this year and its rhetoric since about its need for a nuclear deterrent are a "downward spiral of threats by North Korea."

The administration is prepared to offer assurances to North Korea that it will not be attacked. U.S. partners have dangled economic inducements to North Korea.

U.S. officials said last month that spy satellites showed North Korea could be preparing to test a nuclear weapon. North Korean state media dismissed those reports as a U.S. fabrication.

Rumsfeld, who was in Thailand on Sunday, planned to meet with the country's defense minister, Gen. Thammarak Issarangkura na Ayudhaya. Thailand, a longtime U.S. military ally, is battling Muslim militants in its south who have attacked military facilities and set off bombs in civilian areas.

On Tuesday, Rumsfeld meets in Norway with the country's defense minister, Kristin Krohn Devold. The trip concludes with a stop in Belgium for a meeting of NATO defense ministers.

Isn't this a joke? The US is always downing the UN as ineffective, especially when they wanted to invade Iraq, but now they need the UN to punish North Korea. I smell a rat!

06-05-2005, 12:29 PM
Also... who should we listen to? The "crazies" in Washington D.C., or the people who are most affected by the actions of North Korea?

06-05-2005, 12:36 PM
I think it's just like Iraq, they are only bringing in the UN so that can say..."We did everything we could to avoid a military confrontation" after they strike North Korea.

06-05-2005, 12:37 PM
It's certainly possible.