The Vancouver meeting， focused on strengthening action against North Korea in an effort to force the country to renounce its nuclear strategy， was absurd and illegal although it did ultimately welcome the inter-Korean highlevel talks.
Illegal and absurd
The illegitimacy of the meeting is firstly refl ected in its membership. Most of the nations in attendance were U.S. allies during the Korean War， and the way in which the meeting was summoned in the name of the “United Nations Command” refl ected a Cold War mentality. Few of these nations are stakeholders in the issue of North Korea’s nuclear program. In an effort to appear legitimate， the meeting constantly emphasized the threat posed by the North Korean nuclear issue to the entire world by deliberately misrepresenting what is essentially a conflict between the U.S. and North Korea as an extension of the Korean War.
In a joint statement released after the event， participants agreed to impose sanctions on North Korea which go beyond those required by UN Security Council resolutions on the matter. They also revealed plans to start inspections of vessels at sea in order to prevent ship-to-ship transfers， which are suspected of violating international law.
The meeting also showed a lack of respect to the UN Security Council. In addition to imposing more intense sanctions， the participants disregarded the Security Council’s requirement for related parties， including the U.S.， to solve the issue through dialogue. Instead， they formed a block to put pressure on North Korea and force it to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons.
The most farcical aspect of the meeting was India’s participation and opposition to North Korea. With its own stockpile of illegal nuclear arms， India should have no say on the issue of nuclear proliferation on the Korean Peninsula. By including India in the block， the participants overlooked international law， which is in their eyes merely an advisory system to be heeded or ignored at will.
The meeting， again， conflated North Korea’s human rights issues with its nuclear program， which will only succeed in aggravating Pyongyang. The move also refl ected a lack of sincerity for peaceful resolution.
However， the most alarming incident took place before the Vancouver meeting， when a secret Asia-Pacific military summit was convened by the U.S. and Canada and attended by top commanders. This summit targeted North Korea and its details have been kept secret. Opposed by the international community after World War II， it seems that secret military diplomacy has quietly returned to the world stage under the guise of seeking peace.
This series of moves by the U.S. and Canada have in fact established a framework for a new Cold War or even a military confrontation in the Indian Ocean and Pacifi c region. That would not only cause huge divisions in the international community， but further complicate the Korean issue， creating the biggest obstacle for the region’s reconciliation.