UN Security Council welcomes talks between Koreas

ANI | Updated: Jan 11, 2018 12:23 IST

New York [USA], Jan 11 (ANI): The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) welcomed the high-level talks between arch-rivals North Korea and South Korea on Wednesday, saying that it would reduce differences between the two countries and would lead to the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

The Xinhua reported that although the UNSC had appreciated the rare-high level talks between the two Koreas, it, however, remained adamant in the lifting of sanctions against North Korea, due to its persistent missile tests, which, according to the UNSC, 'was dangerous and threatening'.

The Kazakhstan ambassador to the UN Kairat Umarov said: "Members of the (Security) Council has welcomed the latest steps and communications that have occurred between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK)".

Umarov continued, "Such initial dialogue between the two Korean states can open possibilities for confidence and trust-building on the Korean Peninsula, and to reduce tensions and drive toward de-nuclearisation."

The UNSC, has, however, confirmed, that the sanctions on North Korea would not be lifted soon.

"The members of the Security Council reiterated that the DPRK and all other member states should comprehensively and strictly implement all relevant resolutions of the Security Council," said Umarov.

The latest move comes two days after, North Korea on Tuesday announced it was willing to hold military talks with its arch-rivals South Korea, signalling a further thaw in the strained relations between the two countries.

The Sputnik news agency reported that during the meeting in Panmunjom village, located along the heavily militarised Demilitarised Zone (DMZ), the two sides had agreed to hold talks in order to defuse tensions between the two Koreas.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, in a re-conciliatory New Year message in a televised address to the nation, had also said that North Korea was willing to hold high-level talks with the South.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in hoped that the bilateral talks between the two Koreas could pave way for the de-nuclearisation and peace across the Korean peninsula and broader coordination between the US and South Korea.

Also, North Korea re-opened the suspended inter-Korean communication hotline with South Korea, after it was closed down in February 2016. Also, a military hotline between the two countries was opened yesterday.

Earlier, the two Koreas sat down to discuss ways to cooperate in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics to be held next month. North Korea agreed to send its participants to the Games during the meet.

The rare high-level talks come amid the increasing tension between the two countries as South Korea seized a Hong Kong-flagged oil tanker returning after allegedly transferring oil to North Korea a few days ago.

North Korea is also under tough international sanctions imposed by the UN over the launch of three intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and other nuclear tests conducted in the last year. (ANI)