Donald Trump (R) meets with Kim Jong Un at the border village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone, South Korea. File photo/ AP
North Korea said on Friday it wants President Donald Trump to make a “wise option and bold decision” to produce a breakthrough in stalled nuclear diplomacy, in an escalation of pressure on the US ahead of an expected resumption of talks.
The statement by Foreign Ministry adviser Kim Kye Gwan came days after Trump said another meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “could happen soon” without elaborating.
Kim Kye Gwan says he doubts another summit could make any breakthrough because of what he describes as prevailing opinions in Washington that North Korea must first disarm before getting major concessions and that US-led sanctions brought the North to a negotiating table.
He accused the US of not acting to implement a joint statement issued after the first summit between Kim and Trump in Singapore last year. He said North Korea, for its part, made “sincere efforts” to build mutual trust and carry out the Singapore statement, citing the repatriation of three American detainees and US war remains.
“But I came to know that President Trump is different from his predecessors in political sense and decision while watching his approach to the DPRK, so I would like to place my hope on President Trump’s wise option and bold decision,” Kim Kye Gwan said, using the abbreviation of his country’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
“I and the DPRK Foreign Ministry will follow the future moves of the US”
Kim, in his mid-70s, is a veteran diplomat who led the North Korean delegation at much of the now-dormant six-nation nuclear disarmament talks held in Beijing in 2003-2008.
North Korea entered talks with the United States last year saying it’s willing to negotiate away its advancing nuclear arsenal in exchange of US security guarantee and sanctions relief. The North wants a slow, step-by-step disarmament process, in which each of its denuclearization step is matched by a corresponding US reward. The United States says sanctions on North Korea will remain in place until the country takes significant steps toward denuclearization.
During the Singapore summit, Kim Jong Un promised to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula without providing any timetable or roadmap for disarmament steps. In Singapore, Kim and Trump also agreed to establish new bilateral relations and build a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.
They met again in Vietnam in February for a second summit. But that meeting abruptly fell apart after Trump rejected Kim’s request for extensive relief of sanctions in return for dismantling his main nuclear complex, a limited denuclearization step. The two leaders held a brief, impromptu meeting at the Korean border in late June, and agreed to restart talks.
Last week, North Korea’s Foreign Ministry said working-level nuclear talks with the United States could resume in a few weeks. But it said discussions of North Korea’s denuclearization will only be possible when “threats and hurdles endangering our system security and obstructing our development are clearly removed beyond all doubt.”Associated Press
The missiles, launched from near the coastal city of Wonsan, flew about 430 km (267 miles) out over the sea, reaching an altitude of 50 km (30 miles), before splashing down,
North Korea will hold a plenary session of its ruling party’s central committee on Wednesday, a day after leader Kim Jong Un chaired a politburo meeting to discuss ways to make progress under the “prevailing tense situation,” state media reported.
US President Donald Trump on Saturday invited North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to meet for a historic handshake at the demilitarised zone (DMZ) that divides the Korean peninsula, and said he would have "no problem" stepping over the border.
After shaking hands with Kim over the line that marks where their two countries and their allies fought each other to a standstill in the 1950-53 Korean War, Trump walked for several steps into North Korean territory, before another handshake.
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Ministry also announced the death of three people, who tested positive for COVID-19, due to complications.This brings the total death toll to 273.
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