26/09/2006, full text: Speech of His Excellency Mr. Choe Su Hon, Chairman of the Delegation of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), at the Sixty-first Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Madam President, allow me first of all, on behalf of the delegation of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), to congratulate you, Madam Sheikha Haya Rashed Al Khaifa on your election into the presidency of this session and express my conviction that this session will be successful under your able leadership.

Madam President, the desire of the humankind for a peaceful and prosperous world in the new century is still faced with grave challenges. The unilateralist and high-handed acts of the superpower are ever becoming so reckless as to trample down the principles on the respect for sovereign equality of all States, the fundamental basis of the UN Charter, thereby arousing the serious concern of the international community. Worse still are the invasions of sovereign states either openly committed or disregarded and even fanned up under the pretext of "non-proliferation" and "anti-terrorism," giving rise to massacres of innocent people and the serious destruction of international peace and security. The threats and high-handed acts of the superpower are becoming evermore undisguised towards the DPRK as their target.

The U.S. adventurous military maneuvers such as military exercises and economic blockade against the DPRK continue to be tolerated, while the routine missile test fires of our army for self-defense are condemned as "a threat to international peace and security." Such a situation tells us that only a country armed with a deterrent power is capable of safeguarding its dignity and sovereignty.

Herein lies the necessity and justness of the Songun policy of General Kim Jong Il, the respected leader of our people. The Songun policy is a sure guarantee that enables the DPRK to safeguard its sovereignty and security and to ensure peace and stability on the Korean peninsula and the rest of the region as a whole in the face of the ever-hardening U.S. hostile policy toward the DPRK. The DPRK's possession of a deterrent power, solely for self-defense, is also fully in line with the interests of the regional countries for peace and security and a peaceful environment.

Madam President, as is well known, the Korean people have suffered from a tragic history because of nearly half-a-century-long tyrannical military occupation by Japan, followed by living in a state of war with the USA over sixty years. It is against this background that the Korean people are aspiring after peace more than any other people. Today, there still persists the touch-and-go critical tension and confrontation on the Korean peninsula, rather than durable peace and security. Its source is nothing but the U.S. vicious hostile policy towards the DPRK. The nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula is also a product of U.S. nuclear threats.

The U.S. policy towards the DPRK has gone beyond mere hostility, so far as to pose nuclear threats even by designating it as part of an "axis of evil" and target of preemptive strikes, thus driving the DPRK to itself possess a nuclear deterrent. However, the DPRK government maintains its consistent position to resolve the issue of denuclearizing the Korean peninsula peacefully through dialogue and negotiations.

As is well known to the world, the core elements stipulated in the Joint Statement of September 19, 2005 adopted at the Six-Party Talks are the respective commitments of the DPRK and the USA to abandon its nuclear program and to live in peaceful co-existence. As for the Joint Statement, the DPRK remains committed to implementing all the agreed provisions of the Joint Statement on an equal footing. The DPRK is sure to get a greater benefit from the implementation of the agreed provisions of the Talks. That is why it is willing to hold the Talks more than any other countries.

However, the United States, soon after the announcement of the Joint Statement, immediately imposed financial sanctions upon the DPRK, a dialogue partner, eventually scrapping the already-agreed itinerary for the following rounds of the Talks and creating the present impasse. In view of these facts, it is crystal clear that the USA is not in favor of the Six-Party Talks and the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. If there is anything that the United States is in favor of it is the aggravated tension on the Korean peninsula to be used as a pretext for reinforcing its military forces in the North-East Asian region. By doing so, the United States aims to strengthen its armed forces in this region, and thus contain the ever-growing strength of the DPRK and neighboring countries within its world supremacy strategy. This is what the real intention of the United States is. It is quite preposterous that the DPRK, under the conditions of U.S. sanctions, [should] partake in the Talks. This is the matter of principle for the DPRK and on this point we will not make the slightest concession.

On this occasion may I express my deep gratitude to Member States of the United Nations for their continued support and encouragement to the DPRK in its effort for a peaceful resolution of the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula.

Madam President, as [far as] Korea's reunification is concerned, it is the supreme aspiration of our nation to realize it at the earliest possible date as a prerequisite to ensuring lasting peace and security on the Korean peninsula. The North-South Joint Declaration of June 15, 2000 is a declaration of realizing independence and peaceful reunification by the Korean nation itself rejecting foreign interference. Regrettably however, the south Korean Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade made distorted remarks at this podium on 21 September as to the root causes of the tension in the Korean peninsula without saying a single word about the implementation of the North-South Joint Declaration of June 15.

This arouses our consternation. It is an already well-known fact to the world that the U.S. military presence in south Korea, the U.S. doctrine of preemptive nuclear strikes against the DPRK, incessant large-scale joint military exercises of the USA and south Korea, mass delivery to south Korea of all sorts of military equipment including weapons of mass destruction, and the aerial reconnaissance by the USA for hundred-odd times every month constitute the major factors undermining peace and stability and aggravating tension in the Korean peninsula.

Furthermore, the North-South Joint Declaration of June 15 has not been smoothly implemented so far because of the persistent maneuvers of the USA, which is not in favour of improved inter-Korean relations. The USA wants to keep in place the existence in south Korea of such legal mechanisms as the "national security law" that stipulates fellow countrymen as enemy and denies even basic human rights, which is against the ideal of "By Our Nation Itself," the core principle of the Joint Declaration.

Upholding the banner of the North-South Joint Declaration of June 15 and under the ideals of "By Our Nation Itself," the Government of our republic will surely achieve national reunification by firmly advancing cooperation in three areas of national independence, peace against war and patriotism for reunification.

Madam President, for the United Nations to fulfill its mission for the maintenance of international peace and security, practical measures should be taken to reject unilateralist and high-handed acts that block the establishment of equitable and just international relations. Furthermore, the UN should be democratized, so that all international issues are resolved in conformity with the common interests of Member States. In this regard, we are of the view that one of the reasonable ways to that effect is to hand over the power of making resolutions from the UN Security Council to the General Assembly on the issues directly linked to international peace and security such as the use of force.

It is also imperative to ensure that the United Nations Security Council responsible for international peace and security observe strictly the principle of fairness in its activities. The Security Council should be a body accountable to the General Assembly by making real contributions to international peace and security, not a means for certain countries to legalize their strategic interests.

The fact that the Security Council remains indifferent to the infringement of sovereignty and massacre of civilians committed in the Arab territories, such as the U.S. invasion of Iraq and Israel's aggression [against] Lebanon, represents typical examples of irresponsibility, unfairness and double standards in its activities. The reform of the Security Council now under consideration should focus on ensuring fairness in its activities first and foremost and ensure that the non-aligned and developing countries, which make up the overwhelming majority of Member States, are fully represented in the Council.

With regard to the expansion of permanent membership, a country like Japan, the war criminal that invaded the Asian countries and committed massacres of innocent people, but has been distorting its aggressive history instead of liquidating it, should never be allowed to become a permanent member of the Security Council.

Madam President, the government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea will continue in the future, too, to develop relations of friendship and cooperation with all Member States that respect its sovereignty in accordance with the ideals of its foreign policy -- independence, peace and friendship -- and make active contribution to the efforts of international society for the achievement of world peace and security and sustainable development. Thank you.

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