U.N. official: Denuclearization of N. Korea highest priority

The Yomiuri Shimbun

Fabrizio Hochschild

The Yomiuri ShimbunFabrizio Hochschild, U.N. assistant secretary general for strategic coordination, has expressed high hopes for U.S. President Donald Trump’s planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, saying such a step is “encouraging.”

“It’s the highest priority for the U.N. secretary general to contribute in any way he can to denuclearization [of North Korea] and finding a denuclearization through dialogue, through diplomatic means,” Hochschild said during a Friday interview with The Yomiuri Shimbun in Tokyo that signaled support for U.S.-North Korea dialogue.

Hochschild, of Chile, plays a supporting role to U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres in the handling of priority tasks.

Regarding the role the United Nations could play in the dialogue with North Korea, he said, “We believe that the U.N. has a lot to offer in terms of impartiality, in terms of its role as an upholder of international norms and international standards, in terms of its technical competence ... and in terms of its broader credibility.”

As a factor behind North Korea’s shifting of its stance to seek dialogue, Hochschild said the implementation of U.N. Security Council sanctions resolutions “have helped create conditions that made dialogue possible.”

Added Hochschild: “The aim of the dialogue, the objective of the dialogue is equally clear. It’s denuclearization and sustainable peace. So ultimately, the value of these encouraging steps will be determined by whether that objective is reached.”

He also pointed to the full implementation of the relevant Security Council resolutions, saying that would be critical.Speech

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