Saturday, 23 March, 2019


Time is of the essence, says United Nations envoy on N Korea issue

Bennie Garza | 11 December, 2017, 13:23

The statement makes no mention of what the North Koreans told him.

The United Nations said Feltman met North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong-Ho and Vice Foreign Minister Pak Myong-Kuk and they "agreed that the current situation was the most tense and unsafe peace and security issue in the world today".

In a statement to journalists, he said there's an "urgent need to prevent miscalculations and open channels to reduce the risks of conflict".

During the trip he met North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho and vice-foreign minister Pak Myong-kuk, North Korean state news agency KCNA reported. This was North Korea's first ballistic missile test since September and is believed to be its most unsafe and technologically advanced long-range ballistic missile.

But it added the North had agreed with the United Nations "to regularise communications through visits at various levels".

Tensions between the U.S. and North Korea have elevated since the latter on November 29 tested a missile test that was reportedly capable of reaching the U.S. The U.S. conducted large-scale, joint military drills with South Korea around the Korean Peninsula through last Friday, an exercise that the Pyongyang considered a "grave provocation" that put the region on the "brink" of nuclear warfare.

Pyongyang repeated its position that US and South Korean military drills amounted to provocation and revealed "an intention to mount a surprise nuclear pre-emptive strike against [North Korea]".

Two tremors detected in North Korea yesterday were likely to be aftershocks from the hermit nation's reckless nuclear test in early September, a US Geological Survey official confirmed.

North Korean state media has released images of Kim Jong-un ascending to the top of Mount Paektu in mid-winter, wearing black leather shoes.

"At these meetings, our side said the United States policy of hostility towards [North Korea] and its nuclear blackmail are to blame for the current tense situation on the Korean peninsula", the report said.

"The organisations and individuals were involved in supplying money needed to develop weapons of mass destruction or illegal trading of sanctioned items", the official said, according to Yonhap.

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