World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Remarks On Nuclear Threats And Human Rights In North Korea

Remarks By EU High Representative Catherine Ashton On Nuclear Threats And Human Rights In North Korea

DPRK remains the most isolated country in the world and one of the most hostile to its neighbours. Its people, apart from a small elite, suffer daily deprivation. Insufficient food supply keeps them dependent on international donors.

Despite a third generation of leaders, some inconclusive attempts at economic reform and changed global context, there does not appear to be any positive change.

While the people suffer, the regime squanders resources on a large military and on developing sophisticated offensive weapons. The Six Party Talks (6PT), which could offer the country a way out of its isolation, remain stalled.

Despite hopes for change under new leadership, North Korea remains determined to continue its long running programme to develop a ballistic nuclear weapon capability.

We witnessed a "rocket" launch in December and a nuclear test in February. These provocative actions were followed by a series of threats when the international community protested.

We have condemned in strongest possible terms latest nuclear tests. They pose a blatant challenge to the global non-proliferation regime and a serious threat to lasting peace.

At the same time we and the United States have consistently made clear that if the DPRK took a path of engagement and positive change, we would respond.

I have raised DPRK with my US and Chinese opposite numbers. In particular I have strongly encouraged China to exert pressure on the regime in Pyongyang. This will be high on my agenda when I visit China next month to develop relations with the new leadership.

We of course remain in touch with South Korea and the new South Korean administration has expressed clear willingness to adopt a policy of engagement. Honourable Members, you will note Japan has also stepped up its dialogue.

The International Community, working through the United Nations Security Council, has shown unprecedented unity in sending clear message to the DPRK: that it will not accept continued violations of the international non-proliferation regime.

UN Security Council Resolution 2094 agreed on 7th of March imposes a range of new restrictive measures, particularly in the financial sector. It makes clear that the UN Security Council will take further action if North Korea continues to flout international rules.

I welcome the diplomatic efforts of the US and those of China and Russia which made unity in the UN Security Council possible and who, as immediate neighbours, have important interests at stake.

We have strongly and consistently supported 6 Party Talks over the years. We have economic and security interests in the region.

We have supported the UN regime and systematically imposed sanctions following the Security Council Resolutions after the nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009 and more recently December 2012 and February 2013.

After the most recent events, we have prepared new measures in line with the UNSC Resolution: a ban on key components for the ballistic missile sector, trade on conventional arms and some financial transactions by the North Korean Central Bank and other government bodies.

We remain determined to take action in response to new provocations – the latest of which is North Korea's unilateral declaration that the 1953 armistice is 'invalid' and leader Kim Jong-Un threat to "wipe out" a small South Korean island, as a priority target in the event of military conflict. Honourable Members, this sort of provocation is totally unacceptable and this is precisely the reason why the 18 February FAC adopted a new package of restrictive measures, which further reinforced the measures adopted by the Security Council on 22 January.

We remain deeply concerned about Human Rights situation in North Korea. The EU will cosponsor a Resolution with Japan in the Human Rights Council in Geneva on establishing a Commission of Enquiry into human rights violations in the DPRK.

Meanwhile, we have provided assistance to people in North Korea on purely humanitarian grounds. In 2011 we provided € 10 million to respond to urgent food needs channelled through the World Food Program.

This assistance was directed to the most vulnerable people to improve the feeding of children under five in orphanages, pregnant women, elderly and disabled people.

We will continue to assist the UN in its efforts to keep the international community united. This is the only way we can uphold the non-proliferation regime and support the people in North Korea.

EU Delegation to New Zealand

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On How Obama’s Supreme Court Choice Says Everything (Bad) About His Presidency

Nothing has epitomised the presidency of Barack Obama quite like his Supreme Court nominees. Time and again, Republican presidents will blithely nominate right wing ideological extremists (Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas) who only sometimes misfire and turn out to be liberals in disguise (David Souter). Yet Obama has consistently skipped over the judicially qualified liberals and gone for a succession of centrists... More>>

ALSO:

Turkey: UN Secretary-General On The Terrorist Bombing In Ankara

The Secretary-General condemns the terrorist attack in Ankara earlier today. According to the latest reports, the explosion in the Kizilay district killed and wounded dozens of people. More>>

ALSO:

Five Years On: Fukushima And New Zealand

Science Media Centre: It was the worst nuclear event since Chernobyl. In the wake of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, a crippled Japanese nuclear powerplant went into meltdown, and the world watched as emergency workers scrambled to shut down and contain the reactors. More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF: 1 In 3 Syrian Children Has Grown Up Knowing Only Crisis

An estimated 3.7 million Syrian children – 1 in 3 of all Syrian children - have been born since the conflict began five years ago, their lives shaped by violence, fear and displacement, according to a UNICEF report. This figure includes more than 151,000 children born as refugees since 2011. More>>

ALSO:

Franklin Lamb: Syria’s Truce Bodes Well For Salvaging Our Cultural Heritage

The tentative cessation of hostilities in Syria, which came into effect on 2/28/2016, brokered by Washington and Moscow, is only in its second week... It is well documented that there have been daily incidents of artillery shelling, airstrikes and clashes. Yet, for the nearly 12 million displaced civilians, half of Syria’s population, it’s a much welcomed respite. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Rubio’s Last Stand (And Sleater-Kinney)

Well, it certainly was entertaining to watch Rubio succeed in getting under Donald Trump’s skin the other day, in the last debate before tomorrow’s Super Tuesday multi-state sweepstakes... The real killer for Rubio was that the most recent poll from Florida which shows him losing his home state to Trump by a huge margin in the primary due on March 15. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news