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ICP Asks ROK FM of Link of Test to SC Presidency, “We Can Guess,” He Says

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, February 12 – When South Korean foreign minister Kim Sung-hwan finally emerged from two hours of closed door meetings about North Korea's nuclear test and read a press statement, he agreed to take a few questions.

  Inner City Press asked about the elephant in the consultations room, whether South Korea thinks or acknowledges that the timing of the nuclear test is related to its new membership on the Security Council and especially its presidency this month.

  We can guess,” Kim Sung-hwan replied. Then he begged off further questions, saying (accurately) that the non-Council members had been left waiting for an hour for the start of all-day open debate of Protection of Civilians.

  US Ambassador Susan Rice also came out to the stakeout; her spokesperson chose two questions, from CBS and Kyoto News. Rice said that North Korea will face a swift response by way of a Security Council resolution.

  One wanted to ask Rice if SHE thinks the North Korea test is tied in time to South Korea's Security Council presidency, or might impact on tonight's State of the Union speech by President Obama.

  Or if she has finally seen the North Korean video of the dreaming boy, the missile and New York in flames. Maybe next time.

  The Council's 15 members began their closed door consultations at 9 am. On the way in, some gave quotes, click here for that Inner City Press story. But when 10 am, the time for the Protection of Civilians debate arrived, they were not finished.

  They “suspended” from 10:20 to 10:30 am, then continued to 11 am. Ivory Coast Permanent Representative Bamba left, stopping to tell Inner City Press sarcastically, “This is much more important than Mali.”

  One wag analogized it to kids at a children's table, served small hamburgers and chocolate milk while the adults talk about adult things in a smaller closed room. But that is the UN. Watch this site.

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