Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for April 14, 2017

Newsline: Russian ambassador to North Korea warns of new missile launches, nuclear tests

North Korea could either carry out new ballistic missile launches or conduct nuclear tests shortly in commemoration of its public holiday, Russian Ambassador to North Korea Alexander Matsegora told Sputnik. “If you carefully read the North Korean press, then there is no need to even guess. They themselves openly say that ‘we will mark the upcoming glorious anniversary with significant events,’ in the plural at that,” Matsegora said. North Korea celebrates the 105th anniversary of its founder Kim Il Sung’s birth on April 15, Saturday. “We can well imagine what events these will be. Some believe that the choice is only in two possible events: either new tests or a missile launch,” Matsegora said. The ambassador added that, the US aircraft carrier group dispatched toward North Korea is a provocation that did not contribute to de-escalation on the Korean Peninsula. “Of course, annual US exercises this year are particularly provocative,” Matsegora said. “Taking into account the fact that the US is bringing up an airborne strike group here, this does not work toward calming the situation.” The Russian envoy stressed that the US drills “are really working out a plan to seize Pyongyang, destroy the leadership of the country, approach the Russian and Chinese border, establish administrative control over the provinces of North Korea.”



Newsline: Russian diplomat loses temper at UN

A video of Russia’s Deputy Ambassador to the UN Vladimir Safronkov furiously reprimanding a British diplomat on Wednesday is making headlines. During a discussion on Syria at the UN Security Council, Deputy Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov snapped at British envoy Matthew Rycroft, saying: “Look at me while I’m talking to you.” The outburst came ahead of a vote on a Syria resolution which Russia vetoed. “Don’t turn away your eyes! Look at me! Why are you averting your eyes?” added the Russian diplomat. News website RT reported that the Russian diplomat used the familiar form of the word “you,” usually reserved for talking to friends and children not for addressing senior international public servants.