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ASEAN Ministers Concerned by Tensions on Korean Peninsula

  • VOA News

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, center, is escorted as she arrives to attend the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting and its dialogue partners at the airport in Manila, Philippines, Aug. 5, 2017.

Foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have reiterated their grave concerns over the escalation of tensions in the Korean Peninsula.

In a statement issued at the end of their meeting in Manila Saturday the 10 member nations said the recent ballistic missile launches and nuclear tests by North Korea threaten peace, security and stability in the region and the world.

The ministers said, "We reiterate our support for the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula in a peaceful manner..."

Arriving in Manila Saturday, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-Wha says she would welcome the opportunity to talk with her North Korean counterpart Ri Hong-Yo at the ASEAN Regional Forum, which begins Monday. The annual forum is a grouping of 27 nations, including both Koreas, Russia and the United States.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is expected to arrive in Manila Saturday and will begin meetings with a variety of people Sunday.

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