U.S. should "look squarely at" crux of Korean Peninsula issue: Chinese envoy

(Xinhua) 17:01, April 18, 2023

UNITED NATIONS, April 18 (Xinhua) -- The United States should "look squarely at" the crux of the Korean Peninsula issue and take meaningful, practical and tangible actions to create conditions for peace talks, a Chinese envoy said here Monday.

Tension persists on the Korean Peninsula with confrontations escalating, which China finds deeply concerning, Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the United Nations, told a Security Council meeting.

Zhang pointed out that the Korean Peninsula issue, as a legacy of the Cold War that has cast a decades-long shadow, is in essence a security issue.

Recently, the United States has been conducting frequent military exercises in the periphery of the peninsula, deploying strategic weapons such as nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and B-52 bombers, which has greatly heightened the Democratic People's Republic of Korea's (DPRK) sense of insecurity, he added.

"This is the main trigger for the current tensions on the peninsula," Zhang said.

The Korean Peninsula issue had reached an inflection point several times in the past. However, because of the flip-flop in the U.S. policy, its failure to respond on the principle of action for action, and its reversion to the old practice of sanctions and pressurization, the opportunities to solve the Korean Peninsula issue were missed time and again, he said.

"The parties should deeply reflect on the lessons from the past, and come to realize that a show of goodwill is vital to building mutual trust and creating the conditions necessary for peace talks," said Zhang. "The United States, in particular, should look squarely at the crux of the matter, adopt a responsible attitude, and take meaningful, practical and tangible actions."

All parties concerned should put themselves in each other's shoes, acknowledge each other's legitimate concerns, reduce provocations, confrontations and pressurization, and create enabling conditions whereby meaningful dialogue can resume, he said.

China is a long-standing advocate of the dual-track approach and the principle of moving forward in phases with synchronized steps, and has stressed that denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula and establishing a peace mechanism on the peninsula are both indispensable, said the envoy.

"These proposals played an important role in turning around the situation on the peninsula in the past, and will continue to guide any effort to settle the issue once and for all. All parties concerned should continue to work in this direction," said Zhang.

He also underscored the need for the Security Council to play a proper role.

Any action taken by the Security Council should be geared first and foremost towards easing the situation on the peninsula, and promoting long-term stability and security, he said.

The Security Council should not discard its even-handed approach, or become an instrument for imposing sanctions and pressure to the exclusion of other options or in the service of some countries' geopolitical strategies, Zhang said.

He emphasized that the Security Council resolutions cover not just sanctions, but also texts on resuming dialogue and resolving the issue politically.

"This should not be selectively ignored," said the envoy.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Du Mingming)


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