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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

S.Korea hopes for Russian backing on Cheonan issue at UN

RIA Novosti

16:36 04/06/2010

NOVOSIBIRSK, June 4 (RIA Novosti) - Seoul is counting on Russia's support for a UN resolution on North Korea over the sinking of the Cheonan warship, South Korea's envoy to Moscow said on Friday.

South Korea's 1,200-ton Cheonan corvette sank near the disputed Northern Limit Line in the Yellow Sea on March 26, causing the loss of 46 lives. An international investigation revealed that North Korea fired a torpedo at the vessel from a submarine, although Pyongyang has denied the allegations.

South Korea is likely to receive Western support for a UN resolution condemning North Korea, but it also needs the backing of permanent members Russia and China for the resolution to be passed.

"I believe it would be right to ask the Russian government directly, but I can say that, in this case, we sincerely hope for support from the Russian side," Lee Yoon-Ho said.

North Korea urged the UN Security Council on Friday for a new investigation into the sinking of the vessel, warning that any discussion on sanctions would spark "the toughest retaliation" from Pyongyang.

International media has quoted analysts as saying that North Korea could conduct a third nuclear test if South Korea and the United States build up pressure on Pyongyang.

Pyongyang claims the incident was "orchestrated" by the United States to "blow up the threat from North Korea ahead of midterm congressional elections in November."

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