4 Oct 2018 09:32

Every nuclear disarmament step of Pyongyang should be reciprocated with relaxation of sanctions - Matviyenko

SEOUL. Oct 4 (Interfax) - Federation Council Chairperson Valentina Matviyenko has called for a relaxation of sanctions against North Korea.

"Do agree that North Korea has taken unprecedented steps no one could even dream of six months ago. Let us think about a relaxation of sanctions. No one is proposing that the sanctions be cancelled. However, every positive step towards nuclear disarmament should be reciprocated with relevant measures," Matviyenko said at her meeting with students at the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul.

"We should not keep all residents of North Korea on short ration and in extremely severe conditions," Matviyenko said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a recent meeting of the UN Security Council that sanctions were limiting the ability of two Koreas to fulfill bilateral and trilateral economic projects, Matviyenko said.

"Let us start with lifting at least those restrictions and create conditions for economic projects," she said.

Lavrov pledged to submit a relevant political resolution to the UN Security Council, Matviyenko said.

According to Matviyenko, her meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in September showed that Kim sincerely wanted peace on the Korean Peninsula and intended to pursue the course of denuclearization. "But we have to understand that our demands cannot be limited to North Korea's disarmament and denuclearization. The world must give solid security and sovereignty guarantees to North Korea," she said.

The agreements reached by Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore are a two-way process, Matviyenko said. "There is need for reciprocal steps but, regretfully, we have not seen any. The international community and all states should give comprehensive support and motivate North Korea with practical steps to continue its nuclear disarmament," she said.

Matviyenko called for proceeding with caution in order not to discourage North Korea from fulfilling its obligations.