UNC vows commitment to supporting full implementation of inter-Korean military pact
By Oh Seok-min
SEOUL, Sept. 19 (Yonhap) -- The United Nations Command (UNC) said Thursday it remains committed to supporting the successful implementation of last year's inter-Korean military tension-reduction agreement.
Thursday marks the first anniversary of the signing of the Comprehensive Military Agreement (CMA) between the two Koreas, which calls for a series of peace-building and tension-reducing measures, such as the halt of all hostile acts against each other.
"As Korea celebrates the Comprehensive Military Agreement's one year anniversary, the United Nations Command remains committed to supporting its successful implementation to ease military tension and build confidence on the Korean Peninsula," the UNC said in a statement sent to Yonhap News Agency.
"Along with maintenance and enforcement of the Korean Armistice Agreement, UNC continues to work closely with the Republic of Korea government on all aspects of the UNC mission to support diplomatic efforts to restore peace and security - a mission UNC has successfully executed for more than 65 years," it added.
Established in 1950 under a U.N. mandate in response to North Korea's military provocations, the UNC has played a role as the enforcer of the armistice agreement that halted the 1950-53 Korean War. It is currently led by U.S. Gen. Robert Abrams.
The agreement, signed during the third summit between President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang, has led to a palpable reduction in tensions, but little progress has been made for its full implementation since the denuclearization talks between the U.S. and North Korea stalled in February.
Remaining tasks include the establishment of the inter-Korean joint military committee; the joint excavation of war remains inside the demilitarized zone and allowing visitors to freely move around both sides of the Joint Security Area (JSA), among others.
North Korea has ratcheted up tensions on the Korean Peninsula by test-firing a series of short-range projectiles, including ballistic missiles. Seoul has called on Pyongyang to stop such acts, which violate the spirit of the military agreement.
"It would be difficult to overcome overnight the inter-Korean confrontation and conflicts that have continued for more than 70 years ... Greater patience and efforts are required to continue to make changes on the peninsula," Defense Minister Jeong Kyeog-doo said in a local forum, vowing to redouble efforts for its full implementation.
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