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Progress slow on U.N. resolution on N. Korea: official

All News 15:39 January 25, 2016

SEOUL, Jan. 25 (Yonhap) -- Progress has been slow in drawing up a new U.N. sanctions resolution to punish North Korea for its fourth nuclear test as the U.S. and China disagree over its content, a South Korean official said Monday.

Washington has presented a draft resolution to Beijing for review, hoping to impose tougher and more extensive sanctions on Pyongyang for its Jan. 6 nuclear test.

"The Chinese side, as has been the case in the past, is extremely slow at first," the official told reporters on the condition of anonymity as the talks are still under way.

Beijing's cooperation is essential in drawing a strong sanctions resolution from the U.N. Security Council because it is one of five veto-wielding permanent members, along with the U.S., Russia, France and Great Britain.

China, however, has been reluctant to push the North too hard out of concerns for its own security interests.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to visit Beijing later this week to step up pressure on China to exercise more leverage over Pyongyang.

Quoting the words of U.S Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power, the official said Washington and Beijing have so far failed to narrow their gap over the details of the resolution.

Beijing showed an "initial response" to the U.S. draft last week and talks have begun in earnest, but progress has been slow, he added.

hague@yna.co.kr
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