The Peruvian government on Monday announced that it has ordered the expulsion of North Korean ambassador Kim Hak Chol, declaring him a persona non grata and requesting him to leave the country within five days.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Peru said in a written statement that the decision to expel Kim was made because of North Korea’s decision to “repeatedly and flagrantly violated” United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions in the aftermath of its sixth nuclear test on September 3.
Peru called for Pyongyang to “respect international law and end its nuclear program,” and said that North Korean behavior “constitutes a serious and unacceptable threat to international peace and security, as well as to stability in Northeast Asia and in the world.”
“The Government of Peru reiterates once again its commitment to the peaceful settlement of disputes and strict compliance with the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council,” the statement read. “And reaffirms our position to carry out all diplomatic efforts for denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.”
Kim Hak Chol has served as DPRK ambassador since November 2013.
The announcement came hours before the UNSC on Monday unanimously adopted a new sanctions resolution against North Korea, a response to the country’s sixth nuclear test.
The new sanctions under resolution 2375 target North Korea’s textile industry, apply caps on the transfer of refined petroleum products and natural gas to the country, and blacklist three major DPRK government bodies.
Peru is the second Latin American nation in less than a week to expel its North Korean ambassador. Last Thursday, the government of Mexico announced that North Korean ambassador Kim Hyong Gil had 72 hours to leave the country.
“Mexico took an ignorant measure to declare an ambassador of a revolutionary regime from an independent country as persona non grata,” Ambassador Kim said in a statement to Mexican press following the announcement. “I condemned and totally rejected the U.N. Security Council’s sanctions resolution as an infringement on our independence.”
Earlier in the year, Peru instructed the North Korean embassy in Lima to reduce the number of its credited diplomats as part of measures pursuant to Paragraph 14 of UNSC resolution 2321, which calls upon UN member states to “reduce the number of staff at DPRK diplomatic missions and consular posts.”
During a visit to Chile in mid-August, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence called for Latin American countries such as Brazil, Peru, Chile, and Mexico to sever ties with the North.
“The United States places great importance on the ongoing diplomatic isolation of the Kim regime. And we strongly urge Chile today, and we urge Brazil, Mexico, and Peru to break all diplomatic and commercial ties to North Korea,” Pence said during a joint conference with President Michelle Bachelet of Chile.
The North Korean state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on August 29 that DPRK missions in various countries such as Peru, Bangladesh, Russia, China had held news conferences between August 20 to 22 in response to Pence’s call for cutting off the relations with the DPRK.
KCNA said the DPRK ambassador to Peru had “vehemently denounced” Pence’s comments, describing it as “blatant interference in the internal affairs of independent sovereign states and open challenge to international law and order.”
“He noted that the U.S. high-handed practice only reveals its extreme self-interest and arrogance to sacrifice other countries for meeting its interests. It also proves that the U.S. hostile policy towards the DPRK has reached its extreme pitch, he added.”
Featured Image: Presidencia Perú, Kim Hak Chol
Edited by Oliver Hotham
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