Russia’s Foreign Minister, Igor Morgulov, met with his South Korean counterpart in Seoul on Monday, where he warned that the situation with North Korea could grow to become “apocalyptic,” because of American influence. The top Russian diplomat also seemed to take credit for the recent lull in North Korean ballistic missile tests.
“We greatly value that North Korea preserves the regime of silence for two months already, and Russia actively works to make sure that the current regime continues as long as possible,” Morgulov said, going on to claim that he believes it must be the result of the “freeze for freeze” roadmap championed by China, though Morgulov was happy to share in the credit on behalf of his nation as well.
“I think North Korea’s restraint for the past two months is within the simultaneous freeze road map.”
At that point, he directed his rhetoric toward South Korea and its primary military ally, the United States, accusing the two nations of preventing progress through their military drills. Although North Korea has claimed on multiple occasions that they refuse to participate in diplomatic talks with the U.S. until they have confirmed their ability to strike the East Coast with long-range nuclear missiles, Morgulov claimed it was America that has prevented a de-escalation of tensions in the region.
“If Pyongyang’s demonstrated restraint over the past two months was met with similar reciprocal steps on behalf of the United States and its allies, then we could have moved to the start of direct talks between the United States and North Korea,” Morgulov said.
These statements, of course, are based on the supposition that North Korea, for some reason, has chosen to honor the concept of a mutual freeze of hostile actions without acknowledging the intent to do so publicly. It would seem that Russia’s Foreign Ministry would prefer to make assumptions about the foreign policy of Kim’s regime, rather than asking them directly.