Sec. Council Takes Aim at No. Korea

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The United States, Russia and China have agreed on a joint statement condemning North Korea's recent missile launch and warning Pyongyang of serious consequences if the action is repeated, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, told reporters Saturday.

"The draft that has been shared clearly and unequivocally condemns the launch of April 5th," Rice said, according to a transcript from the U.S. mission. "It demands that [North Korea] not conduct any further launch."

Rice said the proposed resolution has the agreement of the five permanent members of the Security Council as well North Korea's neighbor, Japan, which views the launches as a direct threat. The language is expected to be adopted by the full council on Monday

"What the council can do, and we hope will do, through the adoption of this statement is to send a very clear message to North Korea that what they have done under the guise of a satellite launch is in fact a violation of their obligations and indeed that there are consequences for such actions," she said.

The measure falls short of strict sanctions Japan had sought, but Rice said it would strengthen existing sanctions by adding new entities to a list of companies and individuals embargoed because of ties to the North Korean regime.

North Korea has claimed that the April 5 launch placed a satellite in orbit. Outside agencies said the launch failed and was probably intended to demonstrate the rogue country's missile technology, not to launch a satellite.

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