Policy Area: European Union

European Parliament Resolution on Relations Between the European Union and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Official Journal of the European Communities, January 17, 2001.

The European Parliament,

2 having regard to its earlier resolutions on the food shortage in North Korea and in particular those of 15 May 1997 (1), 23 October 1997 (2) and 12 March 1998 (3),

- having regard to its resolution of 23 March 1999 on relations between the European Union and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (4) following on from the visit of its ad hoc delegation to the DPRK in December 1999,

- having regard to its resolution of 23 March 1999 on the Agreement on terms and conditions of the accession of the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) to the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organisation (KEDO) (5),

- having regard to the report of its second ad hoc delegation which visited the Democratic People's Republic of Korea in October-November 2000,

A. whereas the historic June 2000 summit meeting between the ROK and the DPRK appeared to represent a significant turning point in the development of relations between north and south, whereas the process of reconciliation will have to be sustained and enhanced, and whereas efforts are being made to normalise relations between the DPRK and the US and Japan,

B. whereas the DPRK historically has encouraged terrorism,

C. regretting that the Union has to date not been able to establish a common policy towards North Korea,

D. deploring in particular the fact that some EU Member States have decided to grant North Korea diplomatic recognition without consulting the other States,

E. stressing that support for the KEDO programme cannot by any means be a substitute for a policy established by the European Union and its Member States towards North Korea,

F. stressing that the aim of EU policy towards North Korea must be to ensure, for all North Korea's citizens, respect for fundamental rights, democracy and the rule of law, G. whereas the continuing food crisis has to be seen as a sign of the disastrous state of agricultural production, accompanied by general economic crisis, for which the policies of the DPRK government must take a share of the blame,

H. whereas the humanitarian and human rights situation in the DPRK continues to be extremely precarious,

whereas it is uncertain whether the situation will improve in the near future, and whereas the EU continues to be a major contributor of humanitarian aid to the DPRK,

I. whereas the informal political dialogue started between the European Union and the DPRK in December 1998 has continued, and whereas seven EU Member States have already established, and six Member States are in the process of establishing, diplomatic relations with the DPRK,

1. Welcomes recent developments on the Korean peninsula, recognises the importance of continued dialogue in the resolution of inter-Korean issues and encourages the process of rapprochement and cooperation underway between the ROK and the DPRK; supports the pursuit of the 'sunshine policy' and the further opening-up of the DPRK to the international community;

2. Considers that the summit process and the broadening of other levels of contact is having a symbolic and practical effect; stresses that these first signs of rapprochement will have to be consolidated and enhanced if the process is to maintain credibility;

3. Believes that, as a major international actor in a multi-polar world, the EU can contribute to the consolidation of the process of rapprochement; supports the EU and its Member States in their efforts to ensure progress in the process of rapprochement and a responsible DPRK attitude in matters of nuclear and ballistic non-proliferation, in particular regarding the issue of exportation of missiles and missile technology, progress on a dialogue on human rights, and the access of the population to external aid;

4. Stresses that future political developments on the Korean peninsula will in due course depend exclusively on the sovereign decision of the Korean people;

5. Encourages, therefore, the development of an open and constructive dialogue between the EU and the DPRK, focusing on human rights, the creation of a genuine civil society in the DPRK, and the establishment, as soon as practicable, of regular exchanges between the EU and the DPRK at different levels 2 political, parliamentary, academic and civil society;

6. Would welcome, as a further parliamentary contribution to the process of developing a constructive EU-DPRK dialogue, a return visit from the DPRK;

7. Recommends that the EU increase its humanitarian aid to the DPRK but stresses that free access for NGOs and aid agencies to distribution sites, as well as the admittance to the DPRK of new NGOs to replace and/or augment existing agencies, is a sine qua non for the provision of increased humanitarian aid; stresses, too, that easier access to the DPRK, e.g. for journalists and international observers, could inform the outside world about the extent of the humanitarian crisis and result in further aid;

8. Calls for a new nutrition survey to be taken in the DPRK, along the lines of the 1998 EU/UNICEF/ WFP survey, in order to better assess the current situation, and calls for the DPRK to grant admittance to the DPRK and freer access/movement within the country for those carrying out the survey;

9. Highlights the need for the EU to explore ways of integrating, in the medium term, European humanitarian assistance into an agenda for sustainable development, covering in particular the agricultural sector and the non-nuclear energy sector by means of enhanced technical assistance, and calls on the DPRK government, in this regard, to improve the Commission's access for monitoring and contact with technical ministries, as well as provision of information and documentation concerning all assistance; C 262/170 EN 18.9.2001 Official Journal of the European Communities Wednesday 17 January 2001

10. Welcomes the recent second round of family visits, originally due to have taken place in early November 2000, and encourages the DPRK to cooperate with the ROK so that regulated travel arrangements enabling people to visit family members in the other part of the country can be introduced within a reasonable period of time;

11. Regrets that the Council has not taken into account the proposal of the Commission that funding for KEDO be significantly increased, and insists on the need for a proper revision of Heading 4 (External Actions) of the financial perspective in order to allow for a more adequate EU contribution to KEDO; regrets the lack of coherence shown by the Council in that it is asking for a more significant role for the EU on the KEDO board but is undermining the EU, and the Commission, as its representative, by effectively further cutting funding from its previously already low level;

12. Asks that the EU also have a representative at Kumho, as have other board members, namely Japan, South Korea and the United States;

13. Calls, therefore, on the Council to reconsider the EU contribution to KEDO, in order to bring it more into line with the contributions of the other members represented on the board;

14. Agrees that, in the absence of increased funding, the EU's place on the KEDO Executive Board can no longer be easily justified;

15. Regrets the failure of Member States to coordinate their approach regarding the establishment of bilateral relations with the DPRK and thus calls for the establishment of formal diplomatic relations between the EU and the DPRK; also calls on the remaining Member States which do not currently recognise the DPRK to give careful consideration to establishing diplomatic links;

16. Recognises the initiating role played by the Commission in furthering the EU-DPRK dialogue and welcomes the contacts established between the Commission and the European Parliament in this context;

17. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the governments of the DPRK, ROK, the United States and Japan, and the KEDO Executive Board.

18.9.2001 EN C 262/171 Official Journal of the European Communities Wednesday 17 January 2001

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