S. Korea pushes statement on N.K. nukes during NPT meeting

SEOUL-- South Korea is pushing for an international nonproliferation panel's adoption of a statement calling for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons and missile programs, a government source said Wednesday.

South Korea and France are currently reviewing the draft statement and seek to submit it to the preparatory committee meeting for the 2020 Review Conference of the Parties of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) underway in Vienna, the source said on condition of anonymity.

The review conference takes place every five years to evaluate members' nonproliferation efforts.

The statement under review is said to strongly condemn the North for conducting ballistic missile and nuclear tests in defiance of multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions and also urges Pyongyang to abandon its programs to develop such weapons.

It is also said to include a call for the North to rejoin the NPT and allow the International Atomic Energy Agency to inspect its nuclear facilities.

The North withdrew from the NPT in 2003 as it began pursuing nuclear development.

The North conducted two nuclear tests last year alone and is speculated to carry out its sixth underground blast test in the near future.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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