Ban Ki-moon Will Not Visit North Korea


ban ki-moonU.N. Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon will not visit North Korea next week, his office said, contrary to earlier news reports.

South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency reported on Monday that Ban, who is South Korean, was expected to meet North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, to discuss North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, among other issues. The news agency said its report was based on an information from a high-level U.N. source.

Although, Ban will not visit North Korea soon, his office said the “Secretary-General has repeatedly said that he is willing to play any constructive role, including traveling to the DPRK, in an effort to work for peace, stability and dialogue on the Korean Peninsula.”

Had the visit taken place as reported, it would have been the first visit by a U.S. Secretary-General to the North Korea in more than two decades.

Only two U.N. Secretaries-General have visited North Korea , Kurt Waldheim in 1979 and Boutros Boutros-Ghali in 1993.

In May, North Korea abruptly cancelled a visit by Mr Ban just a day before he was due to arrive.

North Korea faced heavy UN, EU and US sanctions for its nuclear tests.

Prior to his career at the U.N., Ban served in the South Korea’s ministry of foreign affairs. He joined the department in 1970, rising to Foreign Minister in 2004.

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