North Korea slams US over nuclear talks

2013-11-27 12:34
Glyn Davies. (Toshifumi Kitamura, AFP)

Glyn Davies. (Toshifumi Kitamura, AFP)

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Seoul - North Korea on Wednesday slammed the United States for blocking de-nuclearisation talks with "absurd preconditions" that would only prompt Pyongyang to bolster its nuclear deterrent capacity.

In a statement carried by the North's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), a foreign ministry spokesperson said Pyongyang's search for a "negotiated settlement" on its nuclear programme was being stymied by a "hostile" US policy.

The statement was in response to comments on Monday by the US pointperson on North Korea Glyn Davies, who hinted at more sanctions against Pyongyang in the wake of the interim deal to cap Iran's nuclear programme.

The North's spokesperson said Davies' remarks reflected the US’s opposition to Beijing and Pyongyang's calls for a resumption of six-party talks on the North Korean nuclear issue.

Commitment

Washington insists the talks (dormant since 2008) can only resume once the North demonstrates a commitment to de-nuclearisation.

"The US improper behaviour of deliberately creating obstacles in the way of resuming the talks under absurd preconditions will always be blamed," the spokesperson said.

North Korea "will be compelled to steadily bolster deterrence as long as the US becomes all the more undisguised in pursuing hostile moves", he added.

The stalled six-party process involves China, the two Koreas, the United States, Japan and Russia.

Davies told reporters in Tokyo that Pyongyang's attempts to restart dialogue while keeping its nuclear programme running were unacceptable.

Three nuclear tests

"If they do not act to demonstrate that they understand they must fulfil their obligations and give up their nuclear weapons, and then there is more pressure that will be brought to bear on them," he said.

North Korea has carried out three nuclear tests since the first in 2006, the last, and most powerful, in February this year.

During Davies' week-long tour of Northeast Asia, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear programme for the next six months in exchange for limited sanctions relief, in a preliminary accord led by the United States.

Davies warned that it was difficult to draw direct comparisons between North Korea and Iran, but highlighted the fact that the use of sanctions led to success with Tehran.


Read more on:    us  |  iran  |  north korea  |  nuclear  |  security

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