North Korea has been fulfilling its obligation to suspend nuclear and missile tests so the UN Security Council should consider easing sanctions, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a conference dubbed International Cooperation in a Troubled World, organized by the Valdai International Discussion Club in partnership with the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam.
“We continue to call for encouraging Pyongyang to move further forward,” he said. “Pyongyang has been abiding by the moratorium it announced, which concerns both nuclear and missile tests. We believe that the United Nations Security Council could at least make a gesture, easing and lifting some of the sanctions that hinder the implementation of joint inter-Korean projects,” Lavrov added.
The Russian top diplomat pointed out that South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had agreed to resume railway service. “Why doesn’t the Security Council consider ways to change sanctions to give impetus to railway cooperation between the two Korean states?” Lavrov said.
He also noted that it wasn’t right to demand that North Korea unilaterally fulfill all denuclearization conditions before sanctions were eased. “The Singapore summit and preparations for the Hanoi summit show that this issue cannot be resolved on the spur of the moment,” he added.