SA concerned about Korean tensions

2013-04-09 15:32
Ebrahim Ebrahim  (Picture: GCIS)

Ebrahim Ebrahim (Picture: GCIS)

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Pretoria - South Africa is concerned about rising tensions in the Korean Peninsula, Deputy International Relations Minister Ebrahim Ebrahim said on Tuesday.

"[We] call on all sides to refrain from any action or rhetoric that would aggravate the already tense situation," he told reporters in Pretoria.

"We believe in the long-term [that] a political solution carries greater weight than a military solution - one may win the war, but lose the peace."

As South Africa's foreign policy was the pursuit of peace and security, the situation in the Korean Peninsula was "deeply concerning".

Ebrahim said the South African embassy in South Korea was watching the situation to assess whether it was safe for South Africans to remain in that country.

"We have asked our people there to monitor our website. If the situation arises and we feel that there is need for the South African citizens to leave South Korea we will duly inform them, but at the moment I don’t think any country has asked its citizens to leave South Korea," he said.

"If there is a need for South Africans to leave we will give them all the consulate assistance to leave.

'At the moment, we have not asked South Africans not to travel to that region yet."

CNN reported that North Korea issued its latest dispatch of ominous rhetoric earlier on Tuesday, telling foreigners in South Korea that they should take steps to secure shelter, or evacuate, to protect themselves in the event of a conflict on the Korean Peninsula.

The message came as Japan set up missile defences in Tokyo, and North Korean workers failed to turn up for work in the industrial complex jointly operated by North and South Korea.

Read more on:    ebrahim ebrahim  |  north korea  |  south korea  |  sa

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