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December 19, 2010 (KATAKAMI / RIA NOVOSTI) — The U.N. Security Council will hold an emergency meeting on Sunday at Russia’s request to discuss the escalation of tensions on the Korean peninsula.
Closed-door consultations will start at 11:00 a.m. EST (16:00 GMT), Mark Kornblau, a spokesman for the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, told reporters in New York on Saturday.
The United States holds the council’s rotating presidency in December.
Russia’s envoy to the U.N. Vitaly Churkin reiterated on Sunday that Russia was seriously concerned over further escalation between the two Koreas because the current situation in the region “directly affects the national security interests of the Russian Federation.”
“We believe that the Security Council must send a restraining signal to the Republic of Korea [South Korea] and DPRK [North Korea], and help launch diplomatic activity with a view to resolving all issues of dispute between the two Korean sides by political and diplomatic means,” Churkin said.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry on Friday already expressed its concern to North Korea’s ambassador Kim Jong-Jae over the reclusive communist state’s promise to use military force should its rival South Korea hold live-fire drills in the Yellow Sea.
Pyongyang earlier blasted Seoul’s plans to hold exercises on Yeonpyeong Island on December 18-21, saying its response would be “deadlier” than the shelling in November that killed four South Koreans on the island.
The North does not recognize the sea border between the two countries, known as the Northern Limit Line, which was drawn up by the United Nations at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.
UNITED NATIONS, December 19