North Korea chides USA for pressing sanctions

Frederick Owens
August 10, 2018

He continued to note that the USA has no current plans to relax sanctions on North Korea until there is evidence the country is taking steps to denuclearize, saying the Trump administration would continue its campaign of "maximum pressure".

Seoul has been examining nine cases of potential imports of North Korean coal, which would breach a resolution passed last August by the U.N. Security Council to choke off funding for Pyongyang's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

"It's just North Korea that has not taken the steps we feel are necessary to denuclearize", Bolton said. "However, the US responded to our expectation by inciting worldwide sanctions and pressure against the DPRK", the statement read, using an acronym for North Korea's official name.

"Dealing with Americans is hard, and as our main goal is total disarmament of the whole Korean Peninsula, it is necessary that the Americans also abide by their commitments but they refuse to do so". Some experts say that North Korea does not want to denuclearize first or maybe denuclearize at all because it wants a long, drawn-out process that sees external aid shipped in in return for abandoning nuclear weapons.

The South Korean official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of office rules, said the two Koreas will also discuss ways to push through tension-reducing agreements made during an earlier summit between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

North Korea's foreign ministry said on Thursday it had stopped missile and nuclear tests and dismantled "the nuclear test ground", yet the United States still insisted on "denuclearisation first".

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North Korea called out the U.S.' "shameless and impertinent behavior", according to a press release out Thursday via a foreign ministry spokesperson.

The inter-Korean meeting on Monday will be held at Tongilgak, a North Korean-controlled building in the border village of Panmunjom.

Relations between North Korea and the U.S. remain tense, despite reassurance from the U.S. State Department that the two countries are in contact with each other.

The president has also repeatedly defended Kim's intentions, tweeting last month that he was "confident" the leader would "honor the contract we signed &, even more importantly, our handshake".

At the June summit with Trump, Kim made a vague commitment to denuclearisation - far from the longstanding USA demand for the complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantling of Pyongyang's atomic arsenal. The Korean Peninsula is still technically in a state of war because the fighting ended with a cease-fire, not a peace treaty.

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