NZ must take lead for Korean peace

Green MP Keith Locke expects the Prime Minister to return from the Korean War commemorations with a strong commitment to a peace settlement between the two halves of the divided country.

“Its absurd that 50 years after the Korean War there is still a military standoff and 37,000 US troops on Korean soil,” said Mr Locke, the Green Foreign Affairs spokesperson.

“America’s treatment of North Korea as part of the ‘axis of evil’ has not helped and George Bush and John Howard’s plan to intercept North Korean boats on the high seas will only increase the tensions.

“NZ should counsel against any such aggressive moves.

“We should be encouraging George Bush to get back to the Clinton policy of constructive engagement to have serious peace negotiations.

“America’s continual sabre rattling undermines the calmer South Korean stance of dialogue with the North,” said Mr Locke.

“Bush needs ‘enemies’ to justify his huge military budget and projection of global power.

“We should tell him that 50 years after the armistice, in the interests of us all, he must get serious about a peace agreement with North Korea.”