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Russia’s veto is about its breaching of sanctions in pursuit of weapons to use against Ukraine: UK statement at the UN Security Council

President, first allow me to extend our utmost gratitude to the 1718 Panel of Experts, and to the US for their work as penholder.  It follows arms deals between Russia and the DPRK, in breach of UN Security Council resolutions. These include the transfer of ballistic missiles which Russia has then used in its illegal invasion of Ukraine since the early part of this year. This veto undermines the Panel’s work; the integrity of the international nuclear non-proliferation regime; and this Council’s credibility in upholding UN Security Council resolutions. Claims that calls for a review of the sanctions regime were ignored are simply not accurate. This veto does not demonstrate concern for the North Korean people or the efficacy of sanctions. It is about Russia gaining the freedom to evade and breach sanctions in pursuit of weapons to be used against Ukraine. This Panel, through its work to expose sanctions non-compliance, was an inconvenience for Russia. Let us be clear: nothing in this text prevents the Council from reviewing or amending the sanctions regime, should consensus be found. It is deeply concerning that Russia, a permanent member of this Council, has taken such action. Over the past decade, the Panel of Experts has played a vital role in constraining the DPRK, by exposing the progress of its nuclear and missile programmes, and other forms of sanctions non-compliance. But let me be clear to Russia: the sanctions regime remains in place. And the UK remains committed to holding DPRK to account for its compliance with the sanctions regime, and will continue to work with all Members in support of the nuclear non-proliferation regime. The DPRK’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes present a global, and escalating threat to international security and the global non-proliferation regime.


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