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Egypt expresses concern over North Korean nuclear test

Egypt expressed concern on Wednesday over a claim by North Korean that it successfully conducted a hydrogen bomb test, the Egyptian foreign ministry said.

A ministry spokesman, according to a press release, said that the bomb test represents a new threat to nuclear non-proliferation, and undermines efforts of solidifying the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which supports international peace and security.

He said that the continuation of such breaches instigates an arms race and increases the state of tension and instability in the Korean Peninsula.

The spokesman added that Egypt will remain adamant with its current firm stance that promotes the necessity of the NPT, and the essentiality of putting all nuclear related programs and activities under the supervision of the safeguards placed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as listed in the treaty, with no discrimination or exception.

The North Korean claim of the successful test drew global condemnation on Wednesday from both friends and foes of the country.

Several governments promised a firm response as tensions soared again in northeast Asia, with many calling for further action by the United Nations against the hermit nation, which is already subject to heavy international sanctions.

The United Nations Security Council is to hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday in New York following closed-door morning talks between the 15 member-nations.

“While we cannot confirm at this time that a test was carried out, we condemn any violation of UNSC resolutions and again call on North Korea to abide by its international obligations and commitments,” US mission spokeswoman Hagar Chemali said.

The emergency meeting is expected to witness Egypt’s second participation in the council in its two-year term as a non-permanent member after it secured the seat in October 2015.

Egypt has been a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council four times: in 1949-1950, 1961-1962, 1984 and 1996-1997.

source: Ahram Online

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