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US Envoy Suggests New Sanctions Monitoring Group with Seoul & Tokyo

Written: 2024-04-17 17:53:59Updated: 2024-04-17 18:07:52

US Envoy Suggests New Sanctions Monitoring Group with Seoul & Tokyo

Photo : YONHAP News

Anchor: The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations has expressed an intent to seek a new mechanism to monitor the enforcement of UN sanctions on North Korea even if Russia and China attempt to block such efforts. This came during Amb. Linda Thomas-Greenfield's visit to South Korea in the wake of Russia's controversial veto against the annual renewal of the UN panel of experts, which monitors such sanctions violations.
Kim Bum-soo has more. 

Report: A top U.S. envoy to the United Nations said that Washington will work together with its allies to develop options "inside and outside the UN" to stop North Korea from violating nuclear sanctions.  
Amb. Linda Thomas-Greenfield made the comments during a news conference in Seoul on Wednesday, wrapping up her four-day visit to South Korea.
[Sound bite: US Ambassador to UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield]
"As you noted, we look forward to engaging with both Republic of Korea and Japan, but like-minded [countries] as well, on trying to develop options both inside the UN as well as outside the UN. The point here is that we can't allow the work that the panel of experts were doing to lapse. We have to continue to keep eyes on and reporting on the illegal activities of the DPRK and efforts to break the sanctions that have been put in place."
Russia last month exercised its veto power at the UN Security Council to reject the annual renewal of the UN Panel of Experts, which has monitored violations of nuclear sanctions on North Korea over the last 15 years. 

[Sound bite: US Ambassador to UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield] 
"And yes, Russia and China will continue to try to block those efforts. Why? First and foremost, Russia has already been breaking the sanctions regime. They are already engaging with trade with DPRK. They are purchasing weapons that are against the Security Council resolutions. And they have, along with China, continued to protect the DPRK from being held accountable, so I don't expect that they will cooperate or agree with any efforts that we make to find another path. But that is not going to stop us from finding the path moving forward."
The U.S. envoy on Tuesday visited the heavily-fortified demilitarized zone, or DMZ, between the two Koreas and urged Pyongyang to return to talks.
[Sound bite: US Ambassador to UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield]
“We have held the doors open for meaningful diplomacy and we remain open to dialogue — real, productive dialogue without preconditions."
Reuters reported on Wednesday that Seoul, Washington and Tokyo are pushing for a new multi-national panel of experts, possibly outside the United Nations, to ensure nuclear sanctions on the North are properly observed. 

The report quoted a senior South Korean government official as saying that the envisioned panel “would likely lack the international legitimacy granted to a UN-backed operation, but would be able to more effectively monitor North Korea.”

Operated by the three countries, the new panel is expected to be joined by like-minded partners, possibly including Australia, New Zealand and some European countries. 
Kim Bum-soo, KBS World Radio News.

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