The U.S. President, Barack Obama, is to prticipate in the second international summit on nuclear security, taking place in Seoul, South Korea on March 26-27, South Korean press reported on Monday. Mr. Obama is to speak on the nuclear problem on the Korean peninsula, which has been long sanding. A faint hope of a solution appeared recently after a relative success of the US-North Korea talks in Beijing at the end of February. However, no international diplomatic issue can be discussed at the moment without mentioning Iran. Andrei Ilyashenko looks at the importance of Iran, vis-a-vis the rest of the world.
The assumption of power in Pyongyang by the young and inexperienced Kim Jung-Un, following the death of his father in December last year raised hopes of resetting the 6-nation talks on the nuclear problems of North Korea. But such hopes have proved to be a pipe-dream.
The deputy foereign minister of North Korea, Kim Ge Kwan and the U.S. special envoy Glen Davies held talks in Beijing on February 23-24, at the end of which Pyongyang agreed to freeze its nuclear testing, as well as its work on ballistic missiles and uranium enrichment at its Yonbyon research station. In addition, North Korea promised to allow IAEA inspectors to visit its nuclear facilities in response to a request by America and a desire to create a positive atmosphere at the expected US-North Korea summit.
In turn, the U.S. has promised to give 240 thousand tons of foodstuffs to North Korea, which has long been suffering from drought and low harvests.
North Korea’s nuclear moratorium is that country’s first modest step in the right direction, says Hilary Clinton, the U.S. Secretary of State, speaking at the House of Representatives. She at the same time said that her country was deeply concerned, saying that Washington will monitor the situation carefully and judge the new leaders in Pyongyang by their actions.
The basis for the current talks was laid last year when the late Kim Jung Il was still alive. Senior officials from both sides held two rounds of talks. The exchange of foodstuffs for a nuclear moratorium is a standard occurrence in the relationship between the U.S. and North Korea.
The Beijing agreement represents a clear signal to Iran that negotiations can become an alternative to the enlargement of sanctions.
The parallels seen by the U.S. in the nuclear programmes of Iran and North Korea are most inappropriate because Pyongyang already has nukes, while Tehran has no nuclear weapons, points out Danny Ayalon, Israeli deputy foreign minister, speaking in an interview for the Israeli radio. Tape.
To a certain extent, that tallies with the view of Moscow. Writing about foreign policy, the Russian president elect, Vladimir Putin said that the nuclear programme of North Korea was unacceptable, stressing that Russia favoured a non-nuclear Korean peninsula, to be achieved by diplomatic methods. The same applies to Iran.
The Israeli alternative, which the U.S. pretends to distance itself from is fraught with the danger of a new war in the Middle East and a major disturbance of global order.
The current situation demands that at the nuclear security forum in Seoul, Obama should keep track of all the overt and covert ambitions of nuclear and non-nuclear, as well as the threshold countries. Else, a nuclear free world, which he vowed to create during a visit to Prague, will remain a beautiful illusion.