Russia has blocked the renewal of the UN panel monitoring the implementation of sanctions on N Korea | United Nations News

The sanctions, which have been in force since 2006, will remain in place, but the group’s mandate will expire on April 30.

Russia has opposed the United Nations’ decision to reorganize the UN panel of experts monitoring North Korea’s compliance with international sanctions.

Russia’s move follows accusations from the United States, South Korea and others that Pyongyang is supply weapons to Moscow use in his war in Ukraine.

The agency, which oversees compliance with UN sanctions imposed on North Korea over its nuclear and missile programs nearly 20 years ago, said in its latest statement this month that it was investigating reports of arms shipments.

“This is tantamount to destroying CCTV to avoid arbitrary arrests,” South Korea’s UN ambassador, Joonkook Hwang, said of Russia’s veto.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba, writing on the financial media after the veto, described the move as “a mistake”.

China abstained from voting on Thursday, while the remaining 13 members of the UN Security Council voted in favor.

“Russia’s actions today have defiantly undermined global peace and security, all to further Moscow’s fraudulent alliance with the DPRK,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said, referring to the North by its name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

The organization reports twice a year to the Security Council and recommends action to end the sanctions that were first introduced in 2006 and have been gradually strengthened. His job ends at the end of April.

During negotiations on the draft text, Russia and China pushed unsuccessfully to include a requirement that sanctions be reimposed annually.

Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, told the body before the vote that Western countries wanted to “destabilize” North Korea and that sanctions were losing their “importance” and were “unrealistic” in curbing the country’s nuclear arsenal. .

He accused the professional community of being “reduced to playing into the hands of Western media, reprinting biased information and analyzing newspaper headlines and useless pictures”. Therefore, he said, “it was an acknowledgment of his failure to properly assess the state of the sanctions regime”.

The group’s latest report was released earlier this month and said North Korea will “continue to ignore” sanctions, including launching missiles and violating oil export limits. As well as sending weapons to Russia, the group said it was also investigating North Korea’s extensive security operations, which it believes earned $3bn in its weapons use.

The deputy UN ambassador to the United States, Mr. Robert Wood, said that the work of the group is important and he accused Russia of trying to block “independent investigations” because “it began reporting last year on Russia’s violations of the UN Security Council resolutions.” “.

He warned that Russia’s vote would encourage North Korea to continue endangering international security by developing “long-range missiles and evasive exercises”.

Pyongyang continues to develop new weapons despite sanctions, conducting several tests in recent months, including last week when it tested a solid fuel engine “a new type of medium-range hypersonic missile“.

Before the vote, the US and South Korea formed a group aimed at preventing North Korea from taking illegal oil. Under UN sanctions, Pyongyang imports only 4 million barrels of crude and 500,000 barrels of refined products a year.

The UN ambassador in Britain, Barbara Woodward, said: “The group, because of its work to expose non-compliance with sanctions, was a distraction for Russia. “But let me make it clear to Russia: The sanctions regime remains in place, and the UK remains committed to holding the DPRK accountable for compliance.”

In August, Russia used its veto ending the work of the UN team of experts in Maliwho said that Wagner’s forces allied with Moscow were committing widespread atrocities.

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