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At UN on DPRK, Quick Elements to the Press, Alongside Syria and Coup

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 13 -- After the failed North Korean rocket launch, the UN Security Council arranged to get a briefing from the UN's Argentine representative on Asia, Oscar Fernandez Taranco. When last we covered him, he was giving Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's blessing to the coup in the Maldives, and surreptitiously advising his native Argentina how to best raise the Malvinas or Falkland Islands at the UN.

  Despite polling in South Korea, even before the rocket launch's abject failure, that people have many other more pressing concerns, the news industry must be fed. Therefore these staged quotes, on Ambassadors' way into the Security Council:

  French Permanent Representative Gerard Araud stopped and delivered, "it's a clear violation of the UN Security Council resolutions and the Council has to react. We would want to have a strong reaction today but it's will be a negotiation with our friends."

  German Permanent Representative Peter Wittig went further: "we think it's a blatant violation of the UN Security Council resolutions... it's a provocation that we of course condemn, we call on North Korea to desist from such provocations and return to the neg table. North Korea should be a responsible member of the international community, this missile launch is that of a pariah state."

  Actual regional player China was more restrained, with Permanent Representative Li Baodong saying, "we have informal consultations. We hope that all parties remain calm, avoid escalation of the tension. That's our focus."

  A question is whether North Korea might, now in pique, move to an underground nuclear test.

  At 11:15 am the understanding was that there'll be, for now, "elements to the press," followed by more DPRK talks.

  But first the Council will meet about the coup in Guinea Bissau -- Togo's Permanent Representative told Inner City Press his country had asked for the session -- then about the pending Syria draft resolution on advance observers to Syria, on which Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said there has been a misunderstanding, the draft being too long and detailed.

  German Deputy Permanent Representative Miguel Berger countered, in Spanish, that human rights should be in the draft. Watch this site.

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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