Russia demands ‘patience’ on N Korea amid war fears

In-depth Report:

The Kremlin, in its latest statement, has opposed the “language of sanctions” against North Korea over its nuclear tests.

“We need to show self-possession and patience and hold consultations on all the questions of concern to the parties dealing with this problem,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said on Thursday.

In a veiled reference to the US and Japan, he said, “We hope that the latest actions by North Korea will not be used by other states as an excuse for the forced build up of their military potential and will not be turned into a new… arms race in the region.”

The statement comes after Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov called for a ‘tough’ stance against North Korea in response to its nuclear testing.

The US and its allies at the UN Security Council are pressing for additional sanctions against North Korea.

The issue has sparked fears of a regional war. The US and South Korea are on high alert as a result of an announcement by the North that it had scrapped the treaty that ended the Korean war about 50 years ago.

North Korea shut down its main reactor in Yongbyon in June 2007 and made a declaration of its nuclear assets a year later, in return for better relations with the US and financial aid.

However, relations deteriorated again when the US did not deliver on its promised aid and then sponsored a UN Security Council resolution against North Korea when the country launched a rocket carrying a communications satellite in April 2009.

Following the anti-North Korea resolution, Pyongyang expelled inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency and resumed its nuclear activities, culminating in a nuclear explosive test on May 25.

North Korea’s nuclear testing earlier this week triggered noisy reactions from the US and its regional allies South Korea and Japan

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