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EU ambassadors condemn N. Korea's nuclear test

All News 18:08 January 21, 2016

SEOUL, Jan. 21 (Yonhap) -- European Union ambassadors to South Korea and South Korean lawmakers unanimously condemned North Korea's latest nuclear test on Thursday, calling for stronger sanctions by the U.N. Security Council.

South Korea's National Assembly invited ambassadors and councilors from 22 EU member countries to discuss actions by the international community on North Korea's fourth nuclear test on Jan. 6.

"North Korea severely violated U.N. Security Council resolutions and its duty in accordance with international law," said EU Ambassador Gerhard Sabathil during a luncheon with lawmakers in Seoul.

North Korea has insisted that its latest test was the successful detonation of a hydrogen bomb. Seoul and Washington have voiced strong skepticism over the North's claim, but it still raises concerns about the North's advances in its nuclear capability.

The U.N. Security Council is working on a fresh resolution for stronger sanctions amid criticism that its previous sanctions against the North's three nuclear tests have failed to rein in the country's nuclear weapons program.

Sabathil said that the E.U. will make efforts to press Pyongyang into abiding by relevant resolutions, forecasting that a resolution containing stringent sanctions will pass through the U.N. Security Council.

"Effective sanctions are needed against North Korea," Michael Geier, German Ambassador to S. Korea, said, asking what kind of efforts are currently being made by the South Korean parliament.

In response, Rep. Na Kyung-won, chairwoman of the parliamentary foreign affairs committee, said that the parliament has unanimously adopted a resolution denouncing North Korea.

The resolution urged North Korea to scrap its nuclear programs, warning that the North's reckless behavior will draw international pressure and deepen its isolation.

"It is important that the international community unanimously sanction North Korea in order for the country to make the right decision without further provocations," Na said.

khj@yna.co.kr
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