Published: Tue, April 16, 2019

Kim's willingness for dialogue brightens prospect of summit diplomacy

Kim's willingness for dialogue brightens prospect of summit diplomacy

"We will wait for a bold decision from the United States with patience until the end of this year, but I think it will definitely be hard to get such a good opportunity as the previous summit", Kim was quoted as saying by KCNA.

"In any case we will wait with patience for the United States courageous decision by the end of this year but it will clearly be tough to get such a good opportunity like the last time", Mr Kim said in a speech at North Korea's rubber-stamp legislature, according to the KCNA report.

"What is clear is that if the U.S. clings to the current political reckoning, the outlook for resolving problems will be dark and very risky", Mr Kim said.

Kim said the United States has been refusing to withdraw what the North perceives as "hostile policies" while sticking to "mistaken judgment that we would succumb to maximum pressure".

President Trump, meeting with his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in on Friday, said sanctions on North Korea would stay in place. "But US-style dialogue of unilaterally pushing its demands doesn't fit us, and we have no interest in it", Mr Kim said during a speech to the North Korean Parliament.

Choe is also one of the three North Korean officials placed under sanctions by the U.S. previous year over human rights abuse allegations.

Mr Trump and Chairman Kim were unable to reach an agreement to lift sanctions in exchange for North Korea abandoning its nuclear and missile programs.

"There are various smaller deals that maybe could happen", Trump told reporters, though he reiterated that there could be no sanctions relief, because he is personally convinced that the current sanctions are at "a fair level".

North Korean media touted Kim's "re-election" as chair of the State Affairs Commission as an expression of "the general will of all the Korean people" and their gratitude for Kim's "outstanding ideological and theoretical wisdom and experienced and seasoned leadership and demonstrating the politico-ideological might and tremendous power of socialist Korea on the highest level". Moon and Trump had also met in Washington on Thursday, where both made conciliatory statements toward North Korea.

North Korea has a choice "to keep maintaining the atmosphere of improving the North-South ties or to go back to the past when the ties plunged into a catastrophe with the danger of a war increasing", he said.

Long-serving officials such as 91-year-old Kim Jong-nam, the titular head of state, and Premier Pak Pong-ju, 80, were either retired or promoted to symbolic posts and replaced by younger officials.

The United States had continued to provoke North Korea by testing an anti-ballistic missile system and conducting military drills with South Korea despite Trump's announcement that large-scale exercises would end, he said.

Kim Yong-chol was considered a controversial choice for point man because he is held responsible for North Korea's attack on the South Korean warship Cheonan in 2010.

There's been no indication that the USA envoy for the talks, Mr Stephen Biegun, has had any substantive meetings with North Korean leaders since the Hanoi summit.

Trump walked away from making a deal with Kim at their meeting in late February.

"The US came up to the negotiation venue focusing only on methods that can never be realized", he said.

North Korean officials have since expressed a readiness to resume the nuclear and ballistic missile program if the U.S. continues its aggressive policy toward the nation.

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