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Germany mulls fresh EU sanctions on N.Korea

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Germany's foreign minister said on Friday he wanted his EU counterparts to consider further measures against North Korea beyond UN sanctions.

"We will also have to discuss in Brussels on Monday whether we have to take further European measures against North Korea beyond the United Nations sanctions," Guido Westerwelle told reporters.

"We will discuss how we Europeans make our contribution to allowing the pressure on the regime not to abate," he said.

Germany is "very concerned" about the "provocation" that North Korea has been showing for months, government spokesman Steffen Seibert told a news conference.

But he said the international community remained ready to talk "should the North Korean regime decide -- which we hope -- that it wants to observe its responsibility towards its own population, and also towards the world community".

Seibert welcomed the "strong and above all homogeneous" decision by the UN Security Council to beef up existing sanctions on the communist state in response to its February nuclear test.

China is Pyongyang's sole major ally and by far its biggest trading partner but also voted Thursday for the UN resolution, which prompted North Korea to respond with fresh threats of nuclear war.

Westerwelle said he welcomed China's stance at the Security Council and that it was now Beijing's responsibility "to make clear to the rulers in Pyongyang that they have gone over the top with these fresh threats and provocations".

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130308/germany-mulls-fresh-eu-sanctions-nkorea