United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, left, listens as Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono speaks during a high level Security Council meeting on the situation in North Korea, Friday, Dec. 15, 2017 at United Nations headquarters.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, left, listens as Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono speaks during a high level Security Council meeting on the situation in North Korea, Friday, Dec. 15, 2017 at United Nations headquarters.
Photo Credit: Mary Altaffer

UN secretary general warns of risk of Korean war

Share

As Ottawa prepares to host U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Tuesday for talks about the North Korean crisis, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres says he is deeply concerned over the risk of military confrontation on the Korean Peninsula, “including as a result of miscalculation.”

“The situation on the Korean Peninsula is the most tense and dangerous peace and security issue in the world today,” Guterres told the UN Security Council Friday. “I am deeply concerned by the risk of military confrontation, including as a result of unintended escalation or miscalculation.”

The risk is being multiplied by “misplaced over-confidence, dangerous narratives and rhetoric, and the lack of communication channels,”  he said.

The secretary general called on all parties to re-establish and strengthen communication channels, including inter-Korean and military to military channels.

“This is critical to lower the risk of miscalculation or misunderstanding and reduce tensions in the region,” Guterres said.

‘Alarming and accelerated pace’

Friday’s ministerial-level meeting at the Security Council to discuss the challenges to international peace and security posed by North Korea, known officially as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), was convened at Japan’s request.

In 2017, Pyongyang conducted activities related to its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes at an alarming and accelerated pace, the secretary general said.

On Sept. 3, the DPRK conducted its sixth nuclear explosive test, involving what it claimed was a “two-stage thermo-nuclear weapon,” Guterres said.

Furthermore, over the year, Pyongyang conducted 20 ballistic missile launches, including for the first time tests of two intercontinental-range ballistic missiles, as well as tests of new medium- and intermediate-range ballistic missiles two of which flew over Japan in September, Guterres said.

‘Blatant disregard’
This Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, image provided by the North Korean government on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, shows what the North Korean government calls the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile, at an undisclosed location in North Korea.
This Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, image provided by the North Korean government on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, shows what the North Korean government calls the Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile, at an undisclosed location in North Korea. © Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP

North Korea never issued any aviation or maritime safety notifications for any of these launches, the secretary general said.

In addition, the International Atomic Energy Agency (AEA) is being denied access to the DPRK to verify the status of its nuclear program.  The agency monitors Pyongyang’s nuclear program through satellite imagery.

Pyongyang’s actions show “blatant disregard for the will and resolutions of the Security Council and undermines the international norm against nuclear testing and the nuclear non-proliferation regime,” Guterres said.

Yet, the secretary general warned that any attempts to resolve the crisis by military means would have devastating and unpredictable consequences.

Sports competition, but not an arms race
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un provides guidance with Ri Hong Sop (2nd L) and Hong Sung Mu (R) on a nuclear weapons program in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang September 3, 2017.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un provides guidance with Ri Hong Sop (2nd L) and Hong Sung Mu (R) on a nuclear weapons program in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang September 3, 2017. © KCNA KCNA

Guterres also noted the need to disassociate the peace and security situation in the DPRK from the humanitarian needs in the country.

Seventy per cent of the country’s population is affected by food insecurity and 40 per cent are malnourished and some $114 million is needed to meet urgent requirements.

However, the 2017 DPRK Humanitarian Needs and Priorities appeal is only 30 per cent funded, he said.

“The people of the DPRK need our generosity and help,” Guterres said.

He pointed to the upcoming Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, in South Korea, and expressed hope that the North would take part.

“As the General Assembly has recognized, these Games can foster an atmosphere of peace, development, tolerance and understanding on the Korean Peninsula and beyond, Guterres said.

“We must do everything we can to reach that objective – and avoid a level of danger that would be unpredictable in its trajectory and catastrophic in its consequences.”

column-banner-LEVON

Share
Tagged with: , ,
Posted in International, Politics

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*

2 comments on “UN secretary general warns of risk of Korean war
  1. Peter Ashcroft says:

    War of words are a dangerous policy when on a diplomatic tightrope which can lead into either a military or nuclear conflict. This is detrimental to all civilians in subsequent conflict zones. As the BBC motto goes ‘Nations shall speak peace unto nations’ and must act accordingly.

  2. James Cowan says:

    It might help if someone taped Trump’s mouth shut and kept his small hands away from his tweeter.