Expert On The New Russian Settlement Plan On The Korean Peninsula
The US has not shown interest in the talks with the DPRK, said Vladimir Svedetsov, senior researcher at the Center for Asia and the Pacific Rim of the RISI.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov, speaking on Monday at the opening of the 8th Asian Conference of the Valdai International Discussion Club, presented the Russian stage-by-stage plan for the settlement of the situation on the Korean peninsula.
According to the Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia, the first step should be the reduction of military tension. «This is possible, I am absolutely sure of it, if the DPRK rejects missile and nuclear tests and simultaneously reduces the scale and intensity of the American-South Korean exercises," he said. The second stage is the direct negotiations of the DPRK with the United States and the ROK on the principles of peaceful coexistence. "And finally, at the third stage, after such negotiations take place, it would be necessary to launch a process involving all the countries involved to discuss the entire complex of issues of collective security in Asia», the deputy foreign minister said.
Commenting on the statement of the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Vladimir Svedensov noted that «North Korea has not conducted nuclear and missile tests for about two months, and those exercises conducted on the territory of the DPRK have a sufficiently defensive character. I think that North Korea reasonably listened to the requests of Russia and China to abstain from any steps that may be provocative. But, on the other hand, the United States planned next joint exercises with South Korea at the beginning of December, immediately after the unprecedented exercises were conducted off the coast of the Korean peninsula with the participation of three aircraft carriers, and it is not yet possible to say that both sides are ready for direct talks . I think that now there are some consultations at the level of diplomats, possibly specialists, and they are not formal in order to clarify the agenda of already direct negotiations.»
At the same time, the expert expressed concern about the US position: «The call for negotiations is always not bad. Another question is whether the other party, in this case the United States, will hear that it is necessary to sit down at the negotiating table. Undoubtedly one thing is that the sanctions and additional sanctions, including those imposed by the PRC against the DPRK, have a negative effect primarily on the economy and population of North Korea. China is also gradually increasing its sanctions on North Korea so that the DPRK will sit down at the negotiating table, but it's another matter whether the US side is ready for such talks. Even in the establishment of the American there is no common position on the possibility of negotiations with the DPRK. We see quite contradictory statements on the part of the US Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of State, and quite muddled statements by US President Trump himself. It is necessary to be patient here and see how it all ends, but as a whole it is not yet possible to say that there are some positive developments in the position of the United States.»