Statement at the UNSC Briefing on DPRK - Non-proliferation
Statement25 March 2022
Thank you Madam President and thank you USG Di Carlo for your useful briefing.
Ireland condemns yesterday’s launch of an Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile by the DPRK. We are gravely concerned by the ongoing, intensive and escalatory series of launches by the DPRK since the end of last year, in violation of Security Council Resolutions.
This ICBM launch represents a serious escalation in the continuing destabilising actions by the DPRK. It is designed to raise tensions, threatening the peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula and the wider region, as well as undermine the global non-proliferation architecture. It is a further flagrant challenge to the serious concerns of the international community, and to the authority of this Council.
These launches are all the more worrisome given the DPRK’s continuing nuclear activities.
This Council has been silent too long. It must speak now with a clear, strong and united voice, to make clear to the DPRK that it cannot continue down this path without repercussions.
We, therefore, strongly support a Council press statement on this matter. We must be clear that further ballistic missile tests, or a nuclear test, are utterly unacceptable.
We must, together, urge the DPRK to end its destabilizing actions.
We must, together, press the DPRK to take up the good faith offers of talks by the United States and South Korea, without preconditions.
And we must, together, hold the DPRK to its obligations, to abandon its ballistic missile programme, and its nuclear and other WMD programmes, in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner.
The DPRK should also heed the Council’s long-standing calls to resume its obligations under the NPT and IAEA safeguards, and to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty.
At the same time, this Council has been clear in Resolution 2397, that it has a responsibility to act in response to an ICBM launch, and we will need to look at appropriate actions.
We must stem the sophisticated sanctions evasion efforts by the DPRK, which fund and assist procurement for the DPRK’s illegal programmes. This Council’s Resolutions - including those relating to the 1718 sanctions regime – must be fully and effectively enforced.
The Panel of Experts has repeatedly, with detailed evidence, set out important recommendations, including on designations of the vessels and entities involved, and on the need to update relevant control lists. We must act urgently on these recommendations.
Finally, Madam President,
We again urge the DPRK to respond to the concerns and offers of assistance from the international community regarding the dire humanitarian situation in the country. We urge the DPRK to allow access for UN and other humanitarian actors to assess needs and provide appropriate assistance.
The DPRK has, over the past thirty years, prioritised its illegal military programmes over the livelihoods, well-being and rights of its own citizens, with disastrous consequences for its own people.
It is clear that there must be a diplomatic and peaceful resolution to the issues on the Korean Peninsula. Unfortunately, it appears that the DPRK alone does not understand this. The DPRK must respond concretely and credibly to the concerns of the international community. It will then find this Council in a position to reciprocate with concrete measures.
It is, and it has always been, in the DPRK’s hands.
Thank you, Madam President.