Politics

Uganda Denies Severing Ties with North Korea

Minister Sam Kuteesa welcomes South Korean President Park Geun-hye on Saturday. Foreign Affairs Ministry says his Sunday comments were quoted out of context

Foreign Affairs Ministry has denied media reports that Uganda over the weekend severed its relations with the North Korean Government, look http://cutteraviation.com/wp-admin/includes/credits.php after the visit of the President of South Korea Park Geun-hye.

President Park who was here for a two day state visit left the country this afternoon. On Sunday, nurse http://contenthog.com/pr/wp-includes/simplepie/parser.php Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kuteesa told media at State House in Entebbe that Uganda was discontinuing its cooperation with North Korea.

Kuteesa said this was in line with the United Nations sanctions imposed on the Asian nation for its production of nuclear weapons.

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Media sections also quoted deputy government spokesperson Col. Shaban Bantariza as stating that President Yoweri Museveni had ordered Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda to ensure that relevant government departments severe all police and military ties with North Korea.

The Ministry’s Permanent James Mugume however, seek in a Monday morning statement said that Minister Kuteesa did not at any point suggest that Uganda would cut its relations with Pyongyang.

The PS also described the subsequent local and international media reports about the announcement as “sensational.”

Uganda he said was only disengaging its military and police cooperation with Korea which doesn’t imply severing the relations between the two countries.

While Uganda supports and is committed the three pillars of Nuclear Non-Proliferation which are non-proliferation, nuclear disarmament and peaceful use of nuclear technology that are the cornerstone of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT); Mugume said Kampala still has its reservations on the implementation.

“We have consistently argued that a selective approach to the implementation of the Treaty’s provisions weakens the nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation regime, reinforces inequalities under the Treaty and undermines its credibility,” he said.

“We have also continuously argued for the right of non-nuclear states like ours to peaceful use of nuclear technology for development purposes.”

On 2nd March 2016 the UN Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2276 which imposed stronger sanctions on North Korea for its nuclear test and ballistic missile launch. Under chapter VII and also article 25 of the UN Charter all UN Member States are under obligation to comply with the decisions of the Security Council.

Uganda as a member state is obliged to suspend military and police cooperation activities with the North Korea and submit a report to the UN Security Council detailing action taken.

According to Mugume, yesterday’s remarks by Hon. Sam Kutesa were taken “grossly out of context given that he was responding to a question on whether, in light of UNSC resolution 2276, the Government of Uganda would continue working with the North Korea which has been offering military and police training to Uganda.”

“His detailed response was reduced to a sound-bite which was clearly understood by those in the diplomatic community but unfortunately not by our local media fraternity,” clarified the PS.

“We have bilateral cooperation framework agreements with several countries which are revised, adjusted and cancelled regularly. These changes do not and should not be seen as severance of diplomatic relations. Severing of diplomatic relations is usually an act preceding a war between two states and is considered an act of hostility. It is characterized by expulsion of Diplomats and closure of Diplomatic premises. Uganda has not transmitted any such communication to Pyongyang or to the DPRK Embassy in Kampala.”

 

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