중앙데일리

Japan may seek UN resolution over launch

Apr 02,2009
South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, right, greets Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso yesterday in London before a bilateral summit meeting. [YONHAP]


LONDON - President Lee Myung-bak met with Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso yesterday in the sidelines of the G-20 financial summit to discuss joint efforts to fight the economic crisis and North Korea’s announced launch of a long-range rocket.

The North says it will launch a communications satellite between April 4 and 8, but Seoul and Tokyo suspect that the plan is a disguise for a long-range missile test.

“If North Korea fires a long-range missile, it is a clear violation of the UN Security Council Resolution 1718,” Aso was quoted as saying by Blue House spokesman Lee Dong-kwan during the summit. “We will bring the matter to the UN Security Council and seek a way to resolve the situation, including a possibility of submitting a new resolution to the UN Security Council with the United States and England.” Resolution 1718, adopted in the aftermath of the North’s nuclear test in 2006, says that the North cannot “conduct any further nuclear test or launch of a ballistic missile.”

The resolution allows the international community to inspect North Korean ships, bans the supply, sale or transfer to the North of military goods and freezes assets of an individual or a company linked to the North’s arms programs. According to the Blue House spokesman, President Lee agreed with Japan’s plan. “It is necessary to persuade Russia and China to have a stern response,” Lee was quoted as saying by his spokesman. No specifics about the new resolution planned by Japan were released. Japan has said it will shoot down a North Korean missile if it flies over its territory. Although President Lee has already made public his opposition to a military response to the North’s suspected missile launch, he told Aso yesterday that he understands Tokyo’s position to protect its citizens. The two leaders also agreed to improve their nations’ bilateral ties, particularly exchanges in the component and material industries, the Blue House said.

Aso also said he plans to address the need to stabilize Pakistan in order to resolve the issues of Afghanistan during his scheduled summit with U.S. President Barack Obama, the Blue House spokesman said. Following Lee’s 40-minute summit with Aso, Lee was scheduled to meet with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.

Along with other leaders participating in the G-20 summit, Lee will attend the reception hosted by Queen Elizabeth II and a dinner hosted by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. At the dinner Lee will be seated next to U.S. President Barack Obama. Lee is scheduled to meet with Obama on April 2 for the first South Korea-U.S. summit since the new American president’s inauguration. The G-20 financial summit’s main discussions take place throughout the day and Lee is expected to promote aggressive stimulus packages and implementation of the commitment to remove trade and investment barriers.


By Ser Myo-ja [myoja@joongang.co.kr]



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