Russia calls on North Korea and United States to start negotiations and prevent an armed conflict, Russia’s ambassador to North Korea, Alexander Matsegora, told journalists in New York on Tuesday.

“The conditions are very good now, with positive attitude, the Olympic Games [in PyeongChang], the Olympic ceasefire and no [military] exercises,” he said. “We call on them: ‘dear friends, let’s begin!’”

The Russian ambassador to North Korea has arrived in New York to take part in a session of the UN Security Council committee on sanctions against Pyongyang. The Russian diplomat said that during his visit to New York he met with officials from the two Koreas, including Pyongyang’s UN envoy Ja Song Nam.

According to the ambassador, the aim of his visit was to deliver the idea that “the sanctions have run its course and cannot be expanded any further.” He also said the existing sanctions “have huge negative impact on humanitarian situation” in the country, but do not help to solve the nuclear program.

“The time has come to negotiate,” Matsegora said, calling for implementation of the Russian-Chinese roadmap that envisages step-by-step settlement of the Korean issue.

The Russian diplomat said the plan has no alternatives. “No one has come up with anything better so far,” he said.

Tags: ; ; ; ;