MOSCOW, July 4 (Itar-Tass) - Moscow urged Pyongyang to step up its efforts towards resuming six-party talks, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, July 4, after talks with DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Gye-gwan.
He met with Russian First Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov and Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov.
The diplomats exchanged views on the current state of and prospects for bilateral relations and discussed the situation on the Korean Peninsula, paying special attention to the issue of nuclear settlement, the ministry said.
The Russian diplomats stressed the need for joint efforts to ease tensions and create conditions for the speediest resumption of six-party talks on the principles set out in the joint statement of September 19, 2005.
“It was noted that normalisation of the situation on the peninsula would help intensify cooperation between Russia and DPRK in practical areas and start implementing major multilateral economic projects,” the ministry said.
During his recent visit, Kim reiterated Pyongyang’s commitment to settling the nuclear issue through dialogue.
“Denucliarisation of the Korean Peninsula was the last wish of the founder of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Kim Il-sung, and his follower Kim Jong-il. The DPRK aspires to conduct the dialogue and meet with representatives of all sides concerned, including a six-party dialogue with them, in hope to settle the nuclear issue peacefully,” the diplomat said.
The foreign ministers of Japan, the United States and the Republic of Korea held a meeting on the sidelines of the ASEAN forum in Brunei this week to discuss the situation on the Korean Peninsula. This was the first such meeting in nine months.
Last decade, North Korea’s nuclear programme was discussed in six-party talks with the participation of the two Koreas, China, Russia, the U.S., and Japan, which agreed concrete ways to dismantle Pyongyang’s nuclear facilities and practical steps were taken to this end. However negotiations have been suspended since the end of 2008 because of contradictions between DPRK and the U.S. Moreover, Pyongyang declared them terminated. Since then DPRK has conducted a series of nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches.
The U.N. Security Council responded by imposing sanctions upon North Korea. It condemned Pyongyang’s actions and demanded that it stop developing weapons of mass destruction.
The Security Council authorised additional restrictive measures with regard to the DPRK, which the Russian Foreign Ministry said were “targeted in nature” and were “tightly linked to the need to stop North Korean programmes to create nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles that do not address vital needs of the population for humanitarian aid and economic assistance.”
The resolution reaffirmed the Security Council’s commitment to a political and diplomatic solution to the nuclear problem on the Korean Peninsula and resumption of six-party talks.
Moscow urged Pyongyang to give up nuclear weapons and all military missile programmes.
“We urge our partners in the DPRK to receive properly the will of the international community expressed in the resolution, give up nuclear weapons and all military missile programmes, return to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty and IAEA safeguards regime, and join the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty,” the ministry said. “We also hope that all sides concerned will refrain from actions that may aggravate the situation.”
Russia reiterated its readiness to work together with its partners in the six-party format to devise a mechanism of peace and security in Northeast Asia as one of the main channels for creating conditions for resuming negotiations, the Foreign Ministry said.
Recently Pyongyang suggested conducting direct talks with the U.S. without preconditions but the idea was received coldly by Washington, while Japan said that DPRK should prove with real actions, not words, that it is moving towards denucliarisation.