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China condemns NK for ‘wrong actions’

China, North Korea’s main ally and economic backer, strongly condemned the isolated regime for testing a nuclear weapon Sunday, urging it to stop “wrong actions that only deteriorate the situation.”

Other neighbors, Japan and Russia, also denounced the nuclear test.

“North Korea has ignored the international community’s widespread opposition, again carrying out a nuclear test,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its website. “China’s government expresses resolute opposition and strong condemnation toward this.”

“It should effectively return to the track of solving the problem through dialogue,” it added. 

Pyongyang proclaimed that it had achieved “perfect success” in a hydrogen bomb test, dramatically upping the ante in a military standoff with the United States. The provocation overshadowed a China-led summit of the BRICS nation-- Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa -- being held in the southeastern Chinese city of Xiamen.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called the nuclear test “absolutely unacceptable,” after calling a National Security Council meeting. He said the North’s nuclear and missile programs now pose a “more grave and urgent” threat to Japan.

“It is significantly hurting regional and international peace and stability. Our country lodges a strict protest against North Korea and condemns it in the strongest words,” Abe said. 

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (left) and US President Donald Trump (Yonhap)
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (left) and US President Donald Trump (Yonhap)

The test came just hours after Pyongyang claimed to have developed a hydrogen bomb that could be loaded onto a long-range missile and after Abe held talks over the phone with US President Donald Trump on the North’s weapons programs.

Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said the ministry has begun flying “sniffer” planes capable of detecting radioactive fallout.

Russia also expressed the “strongest condemnation” toward Pyongyang and warned that such continued actions are “fraught with serious consequences.”

“This latest demonstrative disregard by Pyongyang of the requirements of the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and the norms of international law deserves the strongest condemnation,” the Foreign Ministry in Moscow said in a statement “In the unfolding conditions, it is imperative to remain calm and to refrain from any actions that lead to a further escalation of tension.”

It also called for “all interested parties” to immediately return to dialogue and negotiations as it is the “only possible way” for an overall resolution of the problems of the Korean Peninsula.

The ministry insisted Moscow remains committed to a joint Russian-Chinese proposal that would see Pyongyang halt weapons tests in return for the US suspending military exercises in the region.

The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization also issued a strong condemnation message.

Its Chairwoman H.E. Paulina Maria Franceschi Navarro said in a statement, “This is a matter of the utmost concern to the international community and must be regarded as entirely unacceptable in that it poses a grave threat to international peace and stability.”

“The announced test is a clear violation of relevant UN Security Council resolutions. I call on the DPRK (North Korea) to fully comply with its international obligations,” she added.

The UN atomic watchdog said that Sunday’s provocation is an act that “completely disregards of the repeated demands of the international community.”

The test was North Korea’s sixth and far more powerful than any weapon it had previously detonated.

Pyongyang declared the test of what it called a hydrogen bomb to be a “perfect success.”

By Jo He-rim & news reports (herim@heraldcorp.com)
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