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'No point' in urgent UN meeting after North Korea missile launch: US

Warning that a weak additional council resolution would be 'worse than nothing' in light of the North's repeated violations, US envoy to the UN Nikki Haley (in photo) also urged China, Japan and South Korea to tighten the screws on Pyongyang. Photograph: (AFP)

AFP United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY, United States Jul 31, 2017, 01.58 AM (IST)

The US envoy to the United Nations said Sunday said there was "no point" in holding a likely fruitless emergency Security Council session on North Korea's latest launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile

Warning that a weak additional council resolution would be "worse than nothing" in light of the North's repeated violations, Nikki Haley also urged China, Japan and South Korea to tighten the screws on Pyongyang.

Speculation had been rife that Washington would seek an emergency session of the Security Council, but Haley shot down such suggestions, stating simply: "That is mistaken."

"There is no point in having an emergency session if it produces nothing of consequence," Haley said in a statement, noting that the North violates "with impunity" the numerous Security Council resolutions to which it is subjected.

"An additional Security Council resolution that does not significantly increase the international pressure on North Korea is of no value.

"In fact, it is worse than nothing, because it sends the message to the North Korean dictator that the international community is unwilling to seriously challenge him," Haley added.

Current UN resolutions bar North Korea from developing any ballistic missile-related and nuclear technology, but Pyongyang has defiantly pressed on with its military programs.

Under Kim Jong-Un's leadership, North Korea has accelerated its drive towards a credible nuclear strike capability, in defiance of international condemnation and multiple sets of UN sanctions. The US Senate passed new bipartisan sanctions on Pyongyang Friday.

In all, six sets of UN sanctions have been imposed on North Korea since it first tested an atomic device in 2006, but two resolutions adopted last year significantly toughened the sanctions regime.

"China must decide whether it is finally willing to take this vital step. The time for talk is over," Haley said.

In an earlier tweet, she pressed China to "act" and Japan and South Korea to increase "pressure," stressing that the North Korean issue requires an international solution.

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