North Korea test must be condemned

The nuclear test by North Korea that registered 5.3 on the Richter scale needs to be condemned, says Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer.

“This test, coming hard on the heels of a missile launch a few days ago, shows North Korea is proceeding with a dangerous escalation of weapons that directly threatens countries in the region.

“World leaders meeting in Laos, including John Key, need to focus on this issue as their first priority and develop a strategy for dealing with the issue.

“That means John Key should raise the issue, particularly amongst the strategic players in the region, South Korea, the United States and most notably China, which wields the most influence over North Korea.

“New Zealand has consistently been a leader in nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, most notably with the implementation of our nuclear-free policy.

“In the past eight years however, our efforts have been lacklustre and unfocused.

“It’s time for our Government to re-exert our leadership in the area of nuclear disarmament as a matter of urgency,” said David Shearer.