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Russia hopes US, North Korea resume denuclearization dialogue — Lavrov

The time given by Pyongyang to Washington to elaborate a mutually acceptable compromise at talks expires at the end of the current year

WASHINGTON, December 11. /TASS/. Moscow hopes that dialogue between Washington and Pyongyang on problems of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula will be finally resumed, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday after talks with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo.

"We are convinced that the political process must be supported vigorously. A key role in it is played by the direct dialogue between the United States and Pyongyang," Lavrov said. "We want it to be resumed and are confident that the dialogue may yield results only if it rests on reciprocal steps."

He stressed that while discussing the implementation of the United Nations Security Council resolutions on North Korea it is necessary to focus not only on sanctions but also on the launch of political process towards settling the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

"We cannot demand North Korea do everything at once and only after that return to issues of its security, lifting of the sanctions, etc.," he said. "The humanitarian situation in North Korea requires urgent steps to see if the world community is ready not only to demand implementation of the resolution but also to react to North Korea’s absolutely legitimate economic humanitarian needs."

According to the Russia top diplomat, even those exporters whose commodity is not covered by the anti-North Korean sanctions refrain from working with that country being afraid of possible punishment.

"Naturally, we call on the North Korean leadership to shoe restraint and hope that conditions for the resumption dialogue will be created," he said.

The time given by Pyongyang to Washington to elaborate a mutually acceptable compromise at talks expires at the end of the current year.

During his visit to South Korea on June 30, US President Donald Trump visited the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) on the border with North Korea where he met with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in the border village of Panmunjeom. The two leaders agreed to resume working-level consultations on denuclearization, which where suspended after their futile summit in Hanoi in February 2019. Under this agreement, US and North Korean delegations met in Stockholm on October 5 to discuss ways to normalize bilateral relations. However they failed to establish dialogue. Whereas Kim Myong-Gil, who led the North Korean delegation, said the talks had been a failure, the US Department of States described these consultations as constructive.