The UN Security Council this Tuesday, March 30, met to talk about North Korea’s latest missile launches but failed to take any action. The United States said the international organization was considering new measures.
Neither the Security Council nor the European nations made any statement after the half-hour, closed-door meeting, in contrast to a year ago when five European nations immediately condemned earlier tests as “provocative.”
According to a diplomat, there were “concerns expressed by the majority of members” during Tuesday’s meeting and renewed calls for denuclearization, although no plans were enforced.
The meeting, which was called by Estonia, Norway, Britain, France, and Ireland, had been denounced by North Korea.
The North’s official KCNA news agency said senior foreign ministry official Jo Chol Su accused the Security Council of a “double standard” and said that countries across the globe “are firing all kinds of projectiles.”
Last week, North Korea launched two weapons assessed by the United States and others to be short-range ballistic missiles, which have been banned following the Security Council resolutions.
The United States has been careful in its utterances on North Korea, with Joe Biden warning of consequences and said that Pyongyang has a choice to choose diplomacy.
Instead of seeking a Security Council meeting, the United States referred the launches to its sanctions committee for assessment.
“We held a committee meeting on sanctions, and we’re looking at additional actions that we might take here in New York,” Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US ambassador to the United Nations, told reporters on Monday.
Greenfield did not specify any measures. North Korea has asked to lift earlier UN sanctions, a sticking point that scuttled the second summit between Kim Jong Un and former US President Donald Trump, who made the landmark decision to meet the North Korean strongman.
Like China, Russia enjoys cordial relations with Pyongyang and has warned against any new sanctions on North Korea.
“It’s a time of assessment, not action,” deputy Russian ambassador Dmitry Polyanskiy told reporters.
“We welcome any dialogue, bilateral or multilateral.”
“We hope that there will be no tensions in the Korean Peninsula and that all sides will refrain from provocative acts and provocative rhetoric, which doesn’t help,” Dmitry said.