North Korea: US is making 'gangster-like' demands on denuclearisation

08 Juillet, 2018, 11:32 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • REUTERS  Joshua Roberts

Following Pompeo's remarks before departing Pyongyang, North Korea's foreign ministry said the talks with Pompeo were "regrettable" and accused the US of making unilateral demands for denuclearization, The Associated Press reports.

"We had many hours of productive conversations", Pompeo told reporters.

In a statement issued by a North Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman and carried by the Korean Central News Agency, North Korea lashed out at the USA for seeking "unilateral and forced denuclearisation" from Pyongyang.

Pompeo said "progress" made in Pyongyang, although he did not offer a timeline for denuclearization.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was ensconced in an elegant Pyongyang guest house for a second day of talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's right-hand man Kim Yong Chol.

But Pyongyang said Saturday of its meetings with Pompeo, "We expected the usa side to come up with constructive measures to help build trust in the spirit of reunion".

North Korea blasted Pompeo and the high-level talks held in the capital of Pyongyang, saying the attitude of the USA was "regrettable".

Nauert said Pompeo had been "very firm" on three basic goals: the complete denuclearisation of North Korea, security assurances, and the repatriation of USA remains from the 1950-53 Korean War.

The remarks exposed the fragility surrounding discussions at the center of President Trump's foreign policy, raising questions about Pyongyang's intentions and whether the Foreign Ministry's statement represents a temporary outburst or if it signified a deeper misunderstanding between the two negotiating teams.

Mr Pompeo, who did not meet with Mr Kim Jong Un on this trip, could point to no concrete achievement from the talks aside from an agreement for the two sides to meet around July 12 in Panmunjom, the border village between the two Koreas, to discuss returning the remains of USA soldiers from the 1950-1953 Korean War.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has delivered a dose of harsh reality to Donald Trump, bashing hopes for a quick denuclearization deal in a pointed rebuke to the president's top envoy while accusing the USA of making "gangster-like" demands.

He also said that working level talks will begin soon on the destruction of a missile-engine testing facility.

The criticism, published on North Korea's government-run Uriminzokkiri website, said Washington should stop provoking the North with an "anachronistic human rights racket" at a time of diplomatic attempts to improve ties.

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However, the statement also appeared to separate North Korea's annoyance with the US from its relationship with Trump himself.

"Look, people are going to make stray comments after meetings", Pompeo said.

"We confirmed that security assurances will be provided to North Korea as agreed in the summit".

On the North Korean side, deputy director general for North American affairs at the DPRK foreign ministry Choe Kang Il and Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Choe Son Hui, among others, accompanied Kim Yong Chol.

In a tweet, Pompeo said he had held a "constructive meeting" with his Japanese counterpart and discussed "maintaining maximum pressure" on North Korea.

"Secretary Pompeo's visit to Pyongyang this time has taken the first steps", she said.

Also high on the agenda is the issue of the remains of USA soldiers missing from the 1950-53 Korean War.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks to members of the media following two days of meetings with Kim Yong Chol, a North Korean senior ruling party official and former intelligence chief, before boarding his plane at Sunan International Airport in Pyongyang, North Korea, July 7, 2018, to travel to Japan.

Trump and Kim pledged at their June 12 summit meeting in Singapore to move toward denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

CVID stands for complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of North Korea's nuclear programme, an oft-cited demand by Washington for Pyongyang. He added that the Trump administration was committed to reaching a deal under which North Korea would denuclearize and realize economic benefits in return.

The harsh statement also illustrates the risks of putting so much stock in a ceremonial summit, now that last month's meet-and-greet between Trump and Kim in Singapore is colliding with the hard-nosed reality of enormously complex nuclear negotiations.

"Kim can afford to play hardball because it's clear to him that Trump, who has already told Americans they can sleep soundly because the threat is now over, badly wants a deal", Russel said. "There are things that I have to clarify", he said.

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