North Korea said on Monday that it is not interested in meaningless talks with the United States just so President Donald Trump had something to boast about, and demanded an end to what it called a policy of hostility if the United States wants dialogue, Reuters reports.
The comment by senior North Korean official Kim Kye Gwan, who is a former vice foreign minister, came after Trump on Sunday called on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to “act quickly” and hinted at another meeting.
Kim Kye Gwan, in a statement on North Korea’s official KCNA news agency, said he had seen Trump’s tweet but little had improved despite three meetings between the two leaders since June last year.
“We are no longer interested in such talks that bring nothing to us,” he said.
“As we have got nothing in return, we will no longer gift the US president with something he can boast of, but get compensation for the successes that President Trump is proud of as his administrative achievements,” Kim Kye Gwan said.
It was the second time in less than a week that North Korean statements have taken direct aim at Trump, something Pyongyang had avoided since the two sides resumed a largely unproductive process of dialogue in 2018, Reuters noted.
A subsequent statement on KCNA quoted Kim Yong Chol, a senior official who formerly led negotiations with the US, as saying that Washington “should not dream of negotiation for denuclearization before dropping its hostile policy”, an apparent reference to US military drills with South Korea and punishing sanctions.
“We have nothing pressing and have no intention to sit on the table with the tricky US,” Kim Yong Chol said, adding that North Korea expects “due compensation for every administrative achievement the US president has talked too much about for over a year.”
“It will be possible to consult (on) denuclearization only when confidence-building between the DPRK and the US goes first and all the threats to the security and development of the DPRK are removed,” he added, using North Korea’s official acronym.
Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met for the first time in a landmark summit in Singapore in June last year to push forward negotiations the US hopes will lead to North Korea dismantling of its nuclear and missile programs.
The talks have made no significant progress and a second summit between Trump and Kim Jong Un collapsed in Vietnam in February.
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