The United Nations is expected to seek to adopt a resolution on the human rights situation in North Korea next month for the 14th straight year, diplomatic sources in New York said Tuesday.
The Third Committee of the U.N. General Assembly is now drawing up a new North Korean human rights resolution, with Japan and the European Union taking the lead, the sources said, adding the document will be submitted to the committee in October.
If the resolution passes the Third Committee, it will be sent to the U.N. General Assembly, which has adopted a resolution on human rights in North Korea for 13 consecutive years.
With the recent progress in North Korea's relationship with the United States and South Korea, however, it remains to be seen whether there will be changes in the expression of the resolution and how strongly the North would react to it, they said.
In this regard, South Korean Ambassador to the U.N. Cho Tae-yul said that the U.N. is expected to again adopt the North Korean human rights resolution this year.
"The U.N. has already adopted the North Korean human rights resolution for several years, and our mission has been deeply involved in the drawing up of the document," said Cho during a parliamentary audit of South Korea's mission to the U.N. in New York.
Cho said that it is impossible for the two Koreas to push to connect their railways and roads and implement other cross-border economic cooperation projects without violating the U.N. sanctions on North Korea.
Seoul and Pyongyang announced after high-level talks early this week that they will hold a ground-breaking ceremony in late November or early December to start the modernization and connection of railways and roads along the eastern and western regions.
The agreement is a follow-up to last month's third summit between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Cho expressed views that the proposed inter-Korean railway and road connections, if further pushed in earnest, could be in violation of the U.N. Security Council sanctions on the North.
"Our mission has been in discussions with the U.N. and allied nations to help inter-Korean exchanges and cooperation projects proceed smoothly within the framework of the international community's North Korean sanctions," the ambassador said.
Asked to comment on the recent demand by North Korea, China and Russia that the North sanctions be eased, Cho said sanctions relief could be considered only after Pyongyang implements any meaningful denuclearization measures.
Source: Yonhap News Agency