Good evening, everyone. I’ve just come from the session, Security Council consultations, where we discussed the Council’s response to the attack on the South Korean ship, the Cheonan.
At the meeting, the United States tabled a Presidential Statement that has been agreed by the P5 + 2, that is the U.S., France, Britain China, Russia, South Korea and Japan.
I think the proposed statement needs no interpretation. It is very clear and an appropriate response that – if approved by the full Council – would send a unified message that the Security Council condemns the attack of the March 26 that led to the sinking of the Cheonan.
In short, this important statement shows the Council’s unity in confronting threats to peace and security. It underscores the importance of preventing further attacks and emphasizes the critical need to maintain peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the larger region.
We very much look forward to working with partners on the Security Council to move this draft forward for issuance and adoption.
Reporter: Ambassador, it doesn’t seem to, in reading it, I don’t see how you can call it clear because it takes in both interpretations. It says that appropriate and peaceful measures should be taken against those responsible and that paragraph doesn’t name North Korea and then North Korea, both interpretations of it, might have, might not have, sunk the ship comes in the next paragraph. So it seems like there is a disagreement and you couldn’t reach an agreement so you put both interpretations in there.
Ambassador Rice: No, we think this is very clear. It states the fact of the North Korean’s stated position, but it is very clear in that it takes a clear account of the findings of the joint investigation and it condemns the attack.
Reporter: It’s actually the same question, but phrased another way. There’s nothing in my reading of it, doesn’t directly blame North Korea for the attack. Is that your reading or do you think that it does directly blame North Korea?
Ambassador Rice: We think the statement is very clear. It puts forth the factual foundation and it expresses the Council’s judgment that the attack on the ship is to be condemned and that no further attacks against the Republic of Korea should be contemplated. Thank you.
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