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Japan Urges UN to Push Ahead with North Korean Sanctions


Japan is calling on the United Nations to send a strong message to North Korea and support Tokyo's draft resolution to sanction Pyongyang for testing missiles.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso Sunday urged the U.N. Security Council not to compromise on the issue just because Council member China opposes the draft resolution.

Many U.N. Security Council members support Tokyo's proposal, but China and Russia - both with veto power - have pushed for milder wording in the document. A vote on the issue is expected Monday. Aso says China risks isolation if it votes against sanctions. The United States has backed Japan.

But, in Seoul Sunday, U.S. envoy Christopher Hill said he is focusing on gathering a consensus on how to deal with North Korea after it test-fired seven missiles last Wednesday, including a long range ballistic missile.

Hill was dispatched to meet with Asian allies after the missile tests. He arrived in Tokyo late today after meeting with officials in Seoul.

South Korea says sanctions may not be necessary or effective and is urging continued dialogue with Pyongyang.

In a broadcast monitored by South Korea's Yonhap news agency Sunday, North Korean state television said North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il has vowed not to compromise in negotiations with the U.S. and has promised to seek revenge if Washington threatens the reclusive communist state.

The broadcast said Mr. Kim called Washington an imperialistic arch enemy and threatened to retaliate against U.S. aggression in what it called "all-out war." It is unclear whether the statement was made in reference to the missile tests.

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