ST. PETERSBURG, October 18. /TASS/. Chairman of the 137th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) assembly, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matvienko noted that hostile rhetoric against North Korea is inadmissible and that the IPU realizes that a conflict in the region could lead to a disaster.
During the assembly that is being held in St. Petersburg, Matvienko met with North Korean and South Korean delegates and suggested they should hold talks. South Korean representatives confirmed their intention to start a dialogue and sit down for negotiations, but North Korean delegates said they were not ready for this move.
"The situation on the Korean Peninsula is being actively discussed on the sidelines [of the assembly,]" Matvienko said in an exclusive interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.
"Inadmissibility of any hostile rhetoric, inadmissibility of such remarks as readiness to obliterate North Korea’s nation is clear, and an absolute majority agrees with it; escalation of tensions regarding this issue, including repeated US-South Korean drills near North Korea’s borders, is inadmissible."
"No doubt, it is quite clear that if an armed conflict or military action [occurs,] it will be a global disaster that will affect not just this region, but will establish a dangerous precedent," the Federation Council speaker stated, admitting that she does not want "to speak about possible tragic consequences" at all.
It is important that parliamentary members are involved in discussion of these problems, Matvienko said. "They are determining their positions, as any country, be it a small island state or a large one, all UN [members] have equal votes and they are speaking with this vote in favor of this or that decision, these or those sanctions, if any are studied," she explained.
Parliaments, Matvienko stressed, greatly influence development of bilateral relations, because "they establish terms for agreements, ratify documents for contractual legal base of state-to-state relations and so on."
The 137th IPU assembly is being held in St. Petersburg on October 14 to 18. It is the largest in the IPU history, with about 100 foreign parliamentary speakers, including from Turkey, Germany and Serbia, and delegations from more than 160 countries from five continents participating. The total number of registered participants exceeds 2,300 people.
The Inter-Parliamentary Union is the oldest (founded in 1889) and one of the most authoritative and influential international parliamentary organizations, which includes 173 countries as members and 11 interparliamentary unions as associated members.