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Speech by Foreign Minister Wang Yi

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Speech by Foreign Minister Wang Yi

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Yesterday, the introduction of further sanctions against North Korea’s nuclear program has been discussed at the UNSC ad hoc meeting. China and the Russian Federation vetoed a draft resolution on imposing a cap on the DPRK’s coal exports.

Our decision to veto the proposed resolution is due to a number of reasons. First of all, we should concentrate on bringing the nuclear issue on the Korea Peninsula back to the negotiating table. The proposed sanctions are opposed to keeping the regional stability. We affirm that diplomacy is crucial in order to find a solution. Sanctions on their own never produce good results.

We need to engage Pyongyang rather than pressure and threaten it. We need to adopt a constructive approach and stress the requirement of a dialogue. These sanctions affect real lives of North Korean people and eventually it threatens the regional stability as it pushes the DPRK government to act in response.

We should also consider the costs this resolution puts on our country. In case the resolution was implemented, China would have to face enormous losses due to its economic linkages to North Korea, disproportionate with respect to other regional actors. We would put enormous pressure on Chinese banks and firms. For that reason, the economic costs that the resolution implies would be carried almost exclusively by the Chinese side. Unfortunately, we have witnessed a number of unpleasant comments recently, which can be summarized as a “China responsibility theory”. We call on all the parties to do their share according to their capabilities. No one should try to shift the responsibility to the other party. China has always demonstrated its commitment to the stability and denuclearization of the Peninsula. We have always dedicated huge efforts and played a constructive role in trying to ease the tensions. We would like to highlight the Chinese role as a mediator for first Four-Party Talks and then Six-Party Talks and our continuous efforts in trying to engage all the parties into a negotiation process. Hence, we hope that everyone understands the importance of finding a peaceful and political solution to the matter and all the relevant parties accept their share of responsibility according to their capabilities and particular domestic situation.

We strongly oppose the conflict on the Korea Peninsula. We are very clear about our position on this matter and express our opposition to the escalation of tensions on the Peninsula. Resuming talks is always a better solution. Any other option can get easily escalated to a war, which can never be an answer to the issue. Instead of isolating DPRK, we should try to open a dialogue and resume Six-Party talks. We need to create right conditions that would place us in a position to seek a peaceful and diplomatic solution that will be possible only through a dialogue. It is a long-term process, but we are willing to do our share alongside the international community.

We need to understand the real problem, which is not the economy, but the matter of security. The solution should be political and diplomatic only. We are not going to solve it by introducing such harsh economic sanctions, in such a way we only prove to DPRK’s regime that the international community aims at its collapse. Instead we should understand that behind its nuclear program, lies the apprehension about the survival of the regime. Instead of threatening DPRK even more with economic sanctions that only worsen the position of its people, we should urge the DPRK to give up its nuclear program, while easing the external military pressure.



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