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Russian diplomat worried over war threat on Korean Peninsula

December 15, 2017, 21:16 UTC+3

The Russian diplomat calls on the United States and South Korea to refrain from regular military drills near the Korean Peninsula

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© AP Photo/Wong Maye-E

UNITED NATIONS, December 15. /TASS/. The threat of an armed conflict on the Korean Peninsula is big as never before and any reckless step may trigger deplorable consequences, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nenebnzya said on Friday at a UN Security Council meeting dedicated to the situation in that region.

The world, in his words, is living through "a most acute and dramatic phase of the development of the situation on the Korean Peninsula." "It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that peace in that region is going through serious trials and the threat of the confrontation’s developing into a hot phase is big as never before," he said.

"Belligerent rhetoric and reckless show of muscle have led to a situation when the whole world is making guesses about the probability of a war," the Russian diplomat said. "It is a fact of life that in such a tense situation any reckless or wrongly interpreted step may trigger deplorable consequences.

He stressed that attempts to resolve the crisis on the Korean Peninsula by military means are inadmissible and called to abandon the policy of mutual pressure and intimidation.

According to the Russian diplomat, North Korea will never abandon its nuclear program as long as it "feels direct threat to its security." He called on the United States and South Korea to refrain from regular military drills near the Korean Peninsula and on North Korea to stop nuclear tests.

He expressed doubts in the United States’ commitment to peace settlement of the crisis, pointing to the fact that whereas North Korea had refrained from provocative steps for more than two months, Washington and its allies had stages "unprecedented big maneuvers and drills near the North Korean border." More to it, the United States had imposed further unilateral sanctions on Pyongyang and listed North Korea among terrorism sponsor countries, Nebenzya added.

UN SC resolutions

Russia is committed to United Nations Security Council resolutions on North Korea and strictly implements international sanctions against that country, he went on. 

"As for the international sanctions against North Korea, we would like to once again reiterate our commitment to their implementation," he said, adding however that such restrictions should not be "a goal in itself but rather an instrument of encouraging that country towards constructive talks on the current problems."

He noted that along with the sanctions that cannot resolve the Korean Peninsula’s nuclear problem, the diplomatic arsenal "includes a range of other methods." He stressed that such measures must not be used to worsen either economic or humanitarian situation in North Korea. "It especially concerns unilateral restrictions that target civilian industries that have nothing to do with that country’s nuclear programs," Nebenzya stressed.

He stressed that such measures must not be used to worsen either economic or humanitarian situation in North Korea. "It especially concerns unilateral restrictions that target civilian industries that have nothing to do with that country’s nuclear programs. Such sanctions seriously worsen living standards," Nebenzya stressed.

Earlier this week, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson accused Russia of violating its liabilities concerning the implementation of the United Nations sanctions as it allegedly employed workers from North Korea. Speaking at the UN Security Council’s meeting on Friday, he called on Russia and China to toughen pressure on Pyongyang and use measures beyond the United Nations Security Council resolutions.

North Korean nationals work in Russia on the basis of intergovernmental agreements that guarantee their rights, he added. 

"I would like to tell the esteemed Secretary of State that North Korean laborers have never worked in ‘slave-like conditions’ in Russia. They are working under the intergovernmental agreements with North Korea that guarantee their rights," he said.

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