BY MAVIS NISHIMURA PODOKOLO
PACIFC Island leaders (PIL) have appreciated the efforts to date by the international community towards the current development surrounding North Korea.
This was highlighted at the recent 8th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM8) at Iwaki city, Fukushima Prefecture in Japan.
The leaders welcomed the “Panmunjeom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula” issued at the Inter-Korean Summit in late April 2018, which confirmed their common goal of the complete denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula and expressed hope that the planned US-North Korea Summit in June would deliver North Korea’s concrete actions for such goal.
The leaders strongly called on North Korea to immediately take concrete actions in accordance with UNSC resolutions.
In particular, they (PIL) expressed deep concerns about North Korea’s sanctions evading tactics including “ship-to-ship transfers” and emphasised the need to accelerate their own efforts in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions, including deregistering North Korean trading or fishing vessels currently flagged on their shipping registers, with development partners supporting FICs in their efforts.
The leaders stressed the importance of seeking a peaceful and diplomatic resolution towards complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of all weapons of mass destruction (WMD), including biological and chemical weapons, and ballistic missiles as well as related facilities of North Korea.
They expected that the announcement by North Korea to discontinue nuclear tests and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) test fires and dismantle its nuclear testing facility would soon lead to its concrete actions in this regard.