China and the United States have agreed on a draft resolution that would expand UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea over its latest nuclear test and hope to put it to a vote in the coming days, council diplomats said.
The draft could go to the full 15-member council soon, Reuters reported, citing two council diplomats.
The two veto powers had been negotiating on a draft resolution for the past seven weeks following Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test on Jan. 6, the news agency said.
“It’s a substantive, long, full draft … which I hope will be adopted in the coming days,” a senior council diplomat said.
“There were a significant number of blockage points between the two countries … There is an agreement between those two countries.”
The US and China have had different views on how strong the response should be to North Korea since Pyongyang’s nuclear test last month.
Washington has been urging harsh punitive measures while Beijing has stressed the need for dialogue and milder UN steps that are confined to non-proliferation.
The diplomats declined to divulge details about the draft sanctions resolution.
Western diplomats told Reuters that restricting North Korean access to international ports was among the measures Washington was pushing Beijing to accept in the wake of Pyongyang’s nuclear test and its latest rocket launch earlier this month.
Washington also wanted to tighten restrictions on North Korean banks’ access to the international financial system, the diplomats said.
North Korea has been under UN sanctions since 2006 because of its multiple nuclear tests and rocket launches.
In addition to a UN arms embargo, Pyongyang is banned from importing and exporting nuclear and missile technology and is not allowed to import luxury goods.
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