Divisions emerge on UN Security Council over DPRK denuclearization

UN General Assembly

Divisions emerge on UN Security Council over DPRK denuclearization

Washington is hailing progress with Pyongyang, but is vowing to stick with strong sanctions. China, Russia, and other members of the United Nations Security Council want to see a path to lift embargoes.

CGTN’s Nathan King filed this report from the United Nations headquarters in New York.

While chairing a Security Council meeting, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said a maximum pressure campaign against Pyongyang would continue. He also said the relationship between the leaders would determine future policy.

“During President Trump’s and Chairman Kim’s historic Singapore summit, Chairman Kim committed to work towards the complete denuclearization of the entire Korean peninsula,” Pompeo said. “The two leaders share a common, personal understanding of what must take place for the transformation of the United States-DPRK relationship.”

Russia and China, however, believe any progress will require a clear path to lifting sanctions. China has also said that now is the time to declare an official end to the Korean War, which has been frozen in armistice since 1953.

“A timely release of an end of war declaration will dispel the specter of war on the Korean peninsula and articulate the political will of having no more war,” Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said. “It will help build basic trust, it will further facilitate denuclearization and put in place the conditions needed for the final peace accord.”

Some council members, however, expressed frustration over the lack of progress on denuclearization.

“We note the lack of concrete steps, so far. Action counts for more than assurances. Deeds must follow words,” British Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt said.

Before the Security Council met, South Korea President Moon Jae-in gave his speech to the U.N. General Assembly. He expressed hope that the recent thaw in relations between the two Koreas can spread.

“North Korea has emerged from its long-standing isolation on its own initiative and has come face-to-face with the international community,” President Moon said.  “It is now the turn of the international community to respond positively to the new choices and efforts of North Korea.”

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