Mr. President,

We thank Assistant Secretary-General Khiari for his briefing. The Council is meeting in view of a further intercontinental ballistic missile launch by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Switzerland condemns this launch of a new model that is likely to have solid fuel technology. The DPRK is thus developing increasingly dangerous and numerous nuclear delivery systems, which, together with its nuclear program, represent a threat to the entire international community.

Switzerland is concerned about the increasing pace of missile tests which exacerbate tensions and worsen the security situation. It recalls the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of the use of nuclear weapons. We need to strengthen our efforts for non-proliferation, disarmament and the maintenance of the nuclear taboo. 

Month after month, our discussions become more similar as the DPRK's nuclear program continues to evolve. However, these meetings and our discussions remain crucial - for this Council cannot ignore its duty and responsibility. I want to highlight three challenges.

First, these launches are in violation of legally binding Security Council resolutions and thus of international law. It is therefore our collective duty to condemn the DPRK's ballistic missile tests. Switzerland reiterates that the DPRK is obliged to implement its obligations under the resolutions of the Council and to take concrete steps to abandon its nuclear weapons, ballistic missiles and related programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner. We also call upon the DPRK, together with all other Annex 2 states, to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. We recall that while the obligations under the resolutions apply primarily to the DPRK, they apply to all States, which are required to effectively implement the Security Council sanctions.

Secondly, Switzerland underlines the importance of the Council's efforts to ensure that humanitarian assistance remains possible and is not negatively impacted by the sanctions. The unity of the Council that allowed for the adoption of resolution 2664 (2022) is proof of our common objective in this regard. The heavy restrictions put in place by the DPRK in connection with the pandemic are severely hampering international humanitarian assistance. We hope that they will be lifted so that humanitarian assistance can resume promptly. The needs of the DPRK people must not be forgotten and their human rights must be respected. The development of nuclear and military programs remains possible only at the cost of serious human rights violations and a precarious humanitarian situation.

Third, the Council and the United Nations as a whole have an important role to play in encouraging dialogue, de-escalation and the search for diplomatic solutions. There is a willingness to conduct and support a dialogue with the DPRK. We welcome the calls for the Secretary-General's good offices and encourage the DPRK to engage constructively with the Council and the UN system.

In order to find a political solution, the Council must break its silence. The call for dialogue should be based on a united position. We encourage all members in the search for consensus in view of a Council product. Switzerland will support all efforts to achieve this unity.

Thank you very much.

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