UN Security Council members are likely to meet in New York later in the day to discuss fresh sanctions on North Korea over its nuclear test, following a tentative agreement between the US and China.
The council is expected to draft a resolution expanding the present sanctions to punish North Korea for its third nuclear test, which was conducted last month.
"The Security Council will hold a meeting at 11:00 am in New York on Tuesday over North Korea's nuclear test. The meeting was called after the US and Beijing reached a tentative agreement on a draft resolution against North Korea," a South Korean diplomat told the Seoul-based Yonhap news agency on condition of anonymity.
The council members are likely to vote on the draft later this week, suggest reports. The exact details of the document are likely to emerge after the meeting.
"I hope to see a draft tomorrow perhaps, but you know it's up to the Americans," a diplomat who did not want to be named told Reuters.
Both South Korea and the US have been lobbying for imposing Articles 41 and 42 of Chapter 7 of the UN Charter, which will allow military enforcement of the sanctions. China has been opposing the invoking of Chapter 7, and has clashed with the US on the exact wording of the draft.
China, a North Korean ally, had earlier campaigned against the imposition of harsh economic sanctions on Pyongyang.
The council enforced fresh sanctions against North Korea when it conducted a rocket launch in December 2012, having been warned against further tests by the UN. However, the defiant nation went ahead with the nuclear test saying it was an act of self-defence.
Under the current sanctions, imposed following previous nuclear tests, North Korea is banned from importing missile technology, arms and luxury goods.
Some North Korean trading companies and individuals are also on a UN blacklist.