Statement on non-proliferation / DPRK

Statement by Representative of Slovenia to the UN Security Council Ambassador Samuel Žbogar at the briefing on non-proliferation / Democratic People’s Republic of Korea

Thank you very much, Mr. President,

I wish to thank the briefers High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Ms. Nakamitsu and to Mr. Leff from Conflict Armament Research for their contribution to today’s discussion.

Mr. President,

Let me make three points on behalf of my delegation:

One – Security Council resolutions are binding and must be implemented. They are not guidelines that can be unilaterally dropped when they don’t suit the political or military interests.

The persistent and flagrant violation of the Security Council resolutions by the DPRK is unacceptable. Slovenia calls on DPRK to cease with its provocative actions and return to dialogue and diplomacy. The DPRK should ensure full implementation of all relevant UN resolutions with a view to abandoning its nuclear weapons and other WMD and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner. Until then, we will keep calling on all states to implement fully and effectively the sanctions in force.

Two – Termination of the work of the 1718 Panel of Experts. After the Russian veto has eliminated the Panel of Experts, a considerable void has presented itself. Not only the work of the Committee and the Council are suffering, the absence of the Panel is also a tremendous setback for the non-proliferation architecture as a whole.

The only viable way forward in this regard is decisive Council action. Slovenia still sees a chance to bring the Panel back and we should spare no effort.

Three – Military cooperation between Russia and DPRK. There is credible evidence available from multiple independent sources that Russia procured DPRK’s origin ballistic missiles. This was confirmed by the panellists of the 1718 Panel of Experts and separately, as was just confirmed to us with Leff’s comprehensive briefing, by Conflict Armament Research.

While the DPRK is illegally developing its ballistic missiles, Russia is illegally procuring these same missiles. This is a dangerous situation, which is destabilising two separate parts of the world at the same time.

Given the strengthening of ties between the Russian Federation and DPRK, also in light of the recently concluded “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership”, we have every reason to believe that this cooperation is only about to expand, in gross violation of multiple Security Council resolutions. This is not friendly cooperation between two separate states. This is military cooperation with DPRK, which involves arms transfers. It is illegal and dangerous for DPRK’s neighbours, for the region and for international peace and security.   

Mr. President,

These trends are deeply disturbing. Countries cannot keep declaring their support for multilateralism and the UN Charter, while invading sovereign countries, and procuring weapons from sanctioned ones.

The Council should support actions and initiatives aimed at reversing these dangerous trends. However, it will remain up to the Member States to consistently implement our existing and future collective decisions designed to uphold international peace and security.

Thank you.

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