DPRK not to attend UN conference on nuclear weapons

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The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) said Friday that it will not participate in the upcoming United Nations conference on negotiating a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.

"The question is whether the conference can produce a result reflective of this desire and wish (for total elimination of nuclear weapons)," said an unnamed spokesman for the DPRK Foreign Ministry.

It is "an immediate vital requirement" for the DPRK to further bolster self-defensive capabilities with a nuclear force as a pivot given that the United States is carrying out joint military exercises with South Korea after introducing the largest-ever strategic weapons into the Korean Peninsula, the spokesman said.

But the DPRK will continue to support the idea of the non-aligned movement for the total dismantlement of nuclear weapons and the worldwide efforts for it, he said.

Last year at a UN committee meeting, the DPRK voted in favor of the resolution proposing to convene a conference on negotiations of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons.

The conference will convene its first substantive session from March 27 to March 31 at the UN headquarters.

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