- The Washington Times - Friday, July 9, 2010

The United Nations Security Council on Friday condemned the March 26 sinking of a South Korean naval ship that resulted in the deaths of 46 sailors.

In a presidential statement, the Council unanimously deplored the attack on the Cheonan in the Yellow Sea.

Investigators from South Korea, the U.S., Britain, Australia, Canada and Sweden concluded that a torpedo of North Korean origin had struck the Cheonan.

The White House said the U.N. statement increases North Korea’s international isolation.


It noted that North Korea is already subject to the strongest sanctions it has ever faced through U.N. Security Council Resolution 1874.  “The international community continues to make clear the cost that comes with North Korea’s provocative behavior,” it said.

The White House said the unanimous U.N. statement reflected the “shared view” of the five members of the six-party talks with North Korea and “constitutes an endorsement of the findings of the Joint Investigative Group that established North Korea’s responsibility for the attack.”

Besides the two Koreas, the U.S., Russia, China and Japan are part of the stalled six-party talks to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.

North Korea has denied any role in the attack on the Cheonan.

The Security Council took note of North Korea’s denial, but said such an attack endangers peace and security in the region and beyond. 

The Security Council called for “appropriate and peaceful measures” to be taken against those responsible for the incident. 

It also underscored the importance of preventing further attacks or hostilities against the South Korea or in the region.

An armistice ended the Korean War in 1953. 

The Council called for full adherence to the Korean Armistice Agreement and encouraged the settlement of outstanding issues on the Korean Peninsula by peaceful means. It sought a resumption of North-South dialogue as early as possible, with a view to avoiding conflicts and averting escalation.

The White House commended  South Korea’s “restraint in the face of North Korean belligerence” and reiterated the U.S.‘ “unwavering commitment” to the defense of South Korea.