ASEAN ministers voice 'grave concerns' over Korea tensions

Claudine Rigal
Août 6, 2017

The UNSC has repeatedly adopted resolutions condemning North Korea's nuclear and missile tests and urging Pyongyang to denuclearize.

Issues that were tackled during the plenary session of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) included the developments in the Korean Peninsula, the Middle East, terrorism and violent extremism, human trafficking and trafficking of illegal drugs.

Ri was spotted at the gala smiling and toasting with the other foreign ministers.

Cayetano said the Philippines was wondering how it could respond to the United States by downgrading relations with North Korea.

Duterte said he would only raise the arbitration ruling favoring Manila at the right time, even as China continues to enhance its facilities in artificial islands in the Spratlys archipelago, a portion of which sits within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone. The Trump administration is cautiously embracing China's apparent newfound cooperation. Washington has repeatedly said that it doesn't rule out any of scenario, including a military one, concerning the North Korean problem.

In attendance were the top diplomats of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

The U.S. says that is simply unacceptable.

Bolivar said the framework on the COC will not be released to the public because of its sensitivity. It's North Korea's only ally, and it won't allow North Korea to be thrown out. She says the USA rejects any "moral equivalency" implied by that proposal.

The outlet citing Ando also reported that some ASEAN foreign ministers had agreed with Japan's call to tighten the sanctions against North Korea.

Experts say the uncertain future U.S. commitment to Asia leaves Vietnam in the most exposed position, as it has competing claims with China and relies on imports from its neighbor. And he will be saying the only reason that we have a nuclear missile program is self-defense.

Wang also urged the USA and South Korea "to stop increasing tensions" and said that all sides should return to negotiations.

Both Cambodia and North Korea are China's allies.

One other issue of course is the US relations with Russian Federation and with China.

The United States is expected to press the Association of South-east Asian Nations (Asean) and other Asian countries to take tougher action against North Korea, such as "drastically" reducing dealings with the already isolated state.

Fuchs said the meeting will avail an important opportunity for both the US and North Korea to send strong and clear messages, without middle men, to one another in regard to their policies.

"There's still no consensus", one of the diplomats said, adding the disagreements over the wordings on the sea issue were holding up the release of the communique. She says it was a "very, very good outcome".

The meeting comes as the US and Asian nations join together to try to step up Pyongyang's economic and diplomatic isolation.

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