China urges calm after DPRK statement

Updated: 2013-01-24 21:11


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BEIJING - A Foreign Ministry spokesman called for calm and restraint from all concerned parties on Thursday after the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) vowed to conduct "a higher-level nuclear test."

"It is in the common interests of all parties concerned to maintain peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and achieve the denuclearization of the peninsula," spokesman Hong Lei said at a regular news briefing.

"(We) hope all concerned parties will keep calm and act in a cautious and prudent way, as well as refrain from taking any action that could lead to the progressive escalation of tensions," the spokesman said.

The DPRK National Defense Commission issued a statement in response to a resolution adopted Tuesday by the UN Security Council that condemns a DPRK satellite launch that took place in December 2012.

"We will not hide the fact that a variety of satellites and long-range rockets will be launched and a nuclear test of a higher level will be carried out during the next phase of the anti-U.S. struggle," said a statement carried by the KCNA news agency.

The 15-member UN Security Council on Tuesday unanimously approved Resolution 2087, which requires the DPRK to comply with all relevant resolutions approved by the Security Council and to refrain from using ballistic missile technology for any launches.

The resolution also suggests seeking a peaceful, diplomatic and political solution for related issues and advocates the renewal of the six-party talks.

The National Defense Commission also declared that the six-party talks, as well as a related September 19, 2005 joint statement, will "no longer exist," adding that the UN Security Council "has been reduced to an organization bereft of impartiality and balance."

Hong said the six-party talks are still an effective mechanism to realize the denuclearization of the peninsula.

The six-party talks, a negotiation mechanism that includes the DPRK, the Republic of Korea (ROK), the United States, China, Japan and Russia, were launched in 2003, but stalled in December 2008. The DPRK quit the talks in April 2009.

Hong said all concerned parties should boost dialogues in order to address their concerns, as well as implement all of the goals set in the September 19, 2005 joint statement.

In the joint statement, the DPRK committed to abandoning all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs and returning, at an early date, to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and to International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards.

The United States affirmed that it has no nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula and has no intention to attack or invade the DPRK with nuclear or conventional weapons. The ROK reaffirmed its commitment not to receive or deploy nuclear weapons in accordance with the 1992 Joint Declaration of the Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, while also affirming that no nuclear weapons exist within its territory.

"China is ready to make joint efforts with the international community to achieve these goals," Hong said.