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Bern, Press release, 27.05.2009

North Korea has announced that it carried out a new underground nuclear test on 25 May 2009. Switzerland condemns the test as a violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions, as a threat to peace and security in the region, and as an affront to the efforts of the international community to stop the proliferation of nuclear weapons.

In resolutions 1695 (July 2006) and 1718 (October 2006), the United Nations Security Council demanded that North Korea abandon all ballistic and nuclear weapons programmes in a way that is both verifiable and irreversible. Last April, the Security Council reiterated its position in a declaration following the launch of a missile by North Korea. Switzerland therefore condemns this latest nuclear test by North Korea, as it did following the first test that North Korea conducted in October 2006.

Switzerland is convinced that a solution to the issue of the North Korean nuclear programme can only be found within the framework of a negotiated process at the diplomatic level. From this perspective, Switzerland therefore reiterates its support for the Six-Party Talks. Moreover, Switzerland remains ready to respond favourably to any request concerning a contribution to the efforts to promote peace and stability in the Korean peninsula.

Switzerland actively supports non-proliferation and the total elimination of nuclear weapons. It has urged North Korea on several occasions to rejoin the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), from which it withdrew in 2003, and to reactivate the safeguard agreement it has concluded with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

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