Obama Scores on Nuclear Proliferation at UN

Manages to get Russia and China to cooperate
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2009 9:11 AM CDT
US President Barack Obama addresses the 64th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2009.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama scored two significant victories at the UN yesterday, cajoling Dmitry Medvedev into saying he would get behind tougher nuclear sanctions against Iran, and convincing both Russia and China to support a resolution strengthening the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. Publicly the administration wouldn’t acknowledge any quid-pro-quo, but several official tell the New York Times that the US won Russia over in part by ditching its plans for a missile defense system in Eastern Europe.

“Sanctions rarely lead to productive results,” said Medvedev, but “we need to help Iran to take a right decision.” China has yet to agree to such sanctions, but it did agree to support the nonproliferation resolution Obama introduced today, which calls for a halt on weapons-grade uranium and plutonium production and allows UN inspectors to monitor nuclear exports. But the resolution is non-binding, and critics say Obama is “overselling” it.