北朝鮮ミサイル 発射なら直ちに国連安保理を

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Apr. 2, 2009)
UNSC must act if missile launched
北朝鮮ミサイル 発射なら直ちに国連安保理を(4月2日付・読売社説)

The international community is united in urging North Korea to refrain from launching a missile. If Pyongyang ignores such calls and goes ahead with the planned launch, the U.N. Security Council, as a matter of course, should act.

The clock is ticking down to the time announced by North Korea for the launch of what it claims is an experimental communication satellite sometime between Saturday and Wednesday.

Japan, the United States and South Korea have held talks with other nations and formed an international coalition to urge North Korea not to go ahead with the launch. China and Russia also are backing the coalition in urging North Korea to restrain itself. But, given that North Korea already placed a three-stage missile on a launchpad, it is highly likely that the nation will eventually fire the missile.

U.N. Security Council resolutions, which followed North Korea's test-firing of missiles and conducting of a nuclear test in 2006, demanded the nation halt all activities related to its ballistic missile program. In addition to the trio of Japan, the United States and South Korea, Britain and France have indicated they consider the planned launch, even if it is that of a satellite as Pyongyang claims, a violation of the resolutions.


Japan, U.S., South Korea agree

Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton confirmed during their meeting Tuesday in The Hague that, if North Korea did launch a missile, the U.N. Security Council should issue a strongly-worded message. Clinton also said that there would be consequences imposed by the Security Council for the missile launch.

Prior to the meeting with Clinton, Nakasone also confirmed with his South Korean counterpart, Yu Myung Hwan, that the issue should be taken up at the U.N. body.

China and Russia have yet to take a position on what they would do if North Korea launches a missile, saying that all efforts should be made for now to prevent North Korea from conducting the launch. They apparently are concerned that six-party talks to end North Korea's nuclear program could be negatively affected. From the start, the way these two nations have perceived the threat from North Korea significantly differs from the perception of Japan, the United States and South Korea.


Type of launch irrelevant

Regardless of whether it is a rocket for launching a satellite or a missile, the basic principles are the same. North Korea is said to have succeeded in making smaller nuclear weapons. If North Korea's missile became capable of carrying a nuclear warhead, the degree of threat from the missile launch would significantly increase.

As the U.N. Charter stipulates, the Security Council is charged with the maintenance of international peace and security. If North Korea goes ahead with a missile launch, the Security Council needs to impose consequences.

Leaders of the Group of 20 economies are gathering in London for their summit meeting. Japan, the United States and South Korea should take this opportunity to step up calls on China, Russia and other members of the international community to jointly act.

North Korea has repeatedly warned that talks at the U.N. Security Council on its rocket launch would cause the breakdown of six-party talks. Maneuvering to drive a wedge between two groups--one comprising Japan, the United States and South Korea and the other comprising China and Russia--is North Korea's usual tactic. Without being shaken by its provocative words, the Security Council should immediately start discussions if North Korea launches a missile.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 2, 2009)
(2009年4月2日01時51分 読売新聞)

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-02 08:33 | 英字新聞

<< 社説:日銀3月短観 「夜明け前... TBS・楽天 攻防戦の結末が示... >>