North Korea Tests Missiles, Plans More

Western Diplomats Push for Yet More Sanctions

by Jason Ditz, May 26, 2009

North Korea has reportedly conducted tests of two missiles, a ground-to-air and a ground-to-ship missile, in the Yellow Sea today, and have cautioned ships to stay away from the area through Wednesday, suggesting more tests are planned. There have also been reports that North Korea has restarted its Yongbyon nuclear plant.

The news comes on the heel’s of yesterday’s apparently successful test of a nuclear weapon by the North Korean government. The test has been roundly condemned internationally, and members of the United Nations Security Council are holding a private meeting today to decide on a course of action.

If the Western diplomats have their way, North Korea will face new sanctions and a new legally binding resolution against them. But while the Chinese and Russian government have both expressed concerns over the test, it remains unclear if they will support additional measures against the nation.

Even if they do, North Korea is already faced with enormous international sanctions and is virtually isolated from the rest of the world, so it remains unclear what, if any, effect the measures would have. British Ambassador to the United Nations John Sawers admitted the council has limited options, but thankfully insisted that “no one was talking about taking military action against North Korea.”

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