North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

DPRK Rep. Speaks During UN General Assembly Debate

DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Pak Kil Yon speaks during the general debate of the 67th United Nations General Assembly in New York on 1 October 2012 (Photo: UN)

DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Pak Kil Yon (Pak Kil-yo’n) delivered the DPRK’s annual remarks during the general debate portion at the United Nations 67th General Assembly on 1 October (Monday).  DPRK state media reported on 4 October (Thursday) that Pak said, “The Korean Peninsula has become the biggest hotspot in the world due to the U.S. persistent hostile policy toward the DPRK. There persists the vicious cycle of confrontation and escalation of tensions that even a spark may lead to a thermonuclear war.No issue including the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula can be settled unless the U.S. drops its hostile policy toward the DPRK. This is the review of the whole course of dialogue it has had with the U.S. and the lesson it has drawn through its experience.”

Members of the DPRK delegation listen to Pak Kil Yon’s speech during the 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on 1 October 2012 (Photo: UN)

According to a summary of Pak’s remarks, he also said “Unless the high- handedness and arbitrariness of certain countries was eliminated, it would be hard to say that the United Nations was playing its role as the centre for coordinating cooperative relations between States on the basis of sovereign equality, as enshrined in the United Nations Charter.”  Referring to the ongoing conflict in Syria, Pak said it was caused by “unjustifiable interference, pressure and use of force that violated Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity”  Pak’s rhetoric about “unjustifiable interference” was underscored in Pyongyang the next day when the DPRK staged a rare public event at Korean People’s Army [KPA] Unit #10215, of the Ministry of State Security.

For those disposed to an I.A. Richards close reading of Pak Kil Yon’s remarks, here is a PDF of the summary and the written remarks submitted by the DPRK Mission to the UN New York.  Interestingly, DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kung Sok Ung (Kung So’k-ung) was initially listed as the DPRK’s speaker on the general debate’s agenda.  On 4 October (Thursday) DPRK state media reported that Kung attended a reception in Pyongyang hosted by Germany’s ambassador to the DPRK.

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October 2012