UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. Security Council has placed North Korea's bleak human rights situation on its agenda, a groundbreaking step toward possibly holding the nuclear-armed but desperately poor country and leader Kim Jong Un accountable for alleged crimes against humanity.

This appears to be the first time that any country's human rights situation has been placed on the agenda for ongoing debate by the U.N.'s most powerful body. China and Russia protested the move.

An angry North Korea, now on the defensive against a U.S. accusation of hacking, has said it would refuse to recognize Monday's meeting.

The council has been urged by a U.N.-backed inquiry and the U.N. General Assembly to refer North Korea's human rights situation to the International Criminal Court.

The council is unlikely to take action Monday.