UN Council vows 'strong' action on N. Korea nuclear test

UNITED NATIONS (AFP) - The United Nations (UN) Security Council will take "very firm and strong" action against any nuclear test by North Korea, the council president said on Tuesday.

Mr Kim Sook, South Korea's UN envoy, said the test appeared "imminent" and any blast would be "a dangerous attempt to undermine the authority and credibility of the Security Council."

The 15-member council is "unified and they are very firm and resolute. I would expect very firm and strong measures to be taken," Mr Kim told reporters at the UN headquarters as his country assumed the council's presidency for February.

"We cannot sit idly by and do nothing vis-a-vis some devastating provocative action done by North Korea," the envoy added.

North Korea has said it will stage a test and experts have predicted it will come before the Lunar New Year on Feb 10 or be timed to coincide with the Feb 16 birthday of leader Kim Jong Un's late father, Mr Kim Jong-Il.

The Security Council widened sanctions against the unpredictable North in January after it staged a rocket test, which is banned under UN Security Council resolutions.

South Korea took up a two-year place on the Security Council in January.

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