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CICA ministers call for complete denuclearization of N. Korea

All News 17:00 April 28, 2016

BEIJING, April 28 (Yonhap) -- Foreign ministers attending a regional security gathering led by Russia and China on Thursday called for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons program "in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner."

It was the first time that the foreign ministers' meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), in its fifth time meeting, adopted a declaration that calls for North Korea's denuclearization, South Korea's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

North Korea conducted its fourth nuclear test in January and launched a long-range rocket in February, prompting the U.N. Security Council to tighten sanctions against the isolated North.

Despite international pressure, there have been signs that North Korea may carry out another nuclear test ahead of its key party congress set to kick off on May 6.

Founded in 1992, the CICA has 26 member states, mostly non-Western countries such as Russia, China, Kazakhstan and Mongolia.

In the joint declaration at the end of the CICA meeting in Beijing, the foreign ministers "condemned" North Korea's January nuclear test and February rocket launch "in the strongest terms," according to a draft of the declaration seen by Yonhap News Agency.

"We reaffirm that we will implement the resolution thoroughly and fully and will further strengthen international cooperation so that DPRK (North Korea) must abandon its nuclear program in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner according to relevant U.N. Security Council resolutions," it said.

The foreign ministers also supported the latest U.N. resolution on North Korea, which was adopted in early March as "the manifestation of the international community's firm resolve that DPRK shall not conduct any further nuclear tests and launches that use ballistic missile technology."

Earlier in the day, South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se called for member states of the CICA to play a "special role" in preventing North Korea from conducting another nuclear test.

Yun is the first South Korean foreign minister to attend the foreign ministers' meeting of the CICA since South Korea joined the gathering in 2006.


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