Kyodo took up press remarks on Monday by U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Powers, during which she publicly rebuked Japan for having been unenthusiastic about a draft sanctions resolution against South Sudan put forward by the Obama administration. The U.S. diplomat said: “I can’t comprehend [Japan’s hesitation to impose sanctions].” According to the article, Tokyo is hesitant because the proposed resolution, if adopted, might exacerbate tensions between the UN and the South Sudan government and hence heighten the risks for SDF personnel deployed there for UN peacekeeping operations.
The wire service separately reported that Washington is displeased with Japan’s reluctance given that China and Russia have indicated that they will not veto the draft resolution and that support from at least one addtitional Security Council member will enable passage of the motion. The article said it is extremely unusual for Japan not to embrace a UN motion drafted by the U.S. government.