N Korea ‘rejected US timeline to cut nuclear arsenal by 60-70 per cent’

11-Aug-2018 Intellasia | Telegraph | 6:02 AM Print This Post

orth Korea has reportedly rejected a formal timeline to give up its nuclear weapons, proposed by Mike Pompeo, the US secretary of state.

The proposal, revealed by Vox, would require Pyongyang to hand over 60 to 70 percent of its nuclear warheads within six to eight months either to the US or a third country.

The concessions that the US would offer in exchange — beyond sanctions relief or removing North Korea from the state sponsors of terrorism list — remain unknown.

According to the website, the plan has been rejected by North Korean negotiators multiple times over the past two months.

 (VOX)

(VOX)

Their refusal to comply could explain some of the frustration expressed by senior US officials in recent days.

In an interview with Fox News on Tuesday, John Bolton, the US national security adviser, accused Pyongyang of failing to live up to the deal signed between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un at a June Singapore summit, which agreed to work towards denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.

Bolton said that Pompeo would be prepared to return to North Korea for talks, but not for more rhetoric.

“What we need is performance from North Korea on denuclearisation,” he said. “North Korea has not taken the steps we feel are necessary to denuclearise.”

Pyongyang is also growing impatient with the US. When Pompeo went to the country for a third time in July, Kim Jong-un opted to visit a potato farm rather than meet him.

On Thursday, Pyongyang reiterated its own demand for the US to agree to declare a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War, which ended with an armistice and not a peace treaty.

Declaring an end to the war is the “demand of our time” and will be the “first process” toward a peace and security guarantee, the state-run Rodong Sinmun said in a commentary translated by Yonhap.

South Korea has viewed the diplomatic rapprochement with North Korea this year as a political coup and is keen to keep progress towards denuclearisation on track.

Seoul said on Thursday that officials from the North and South would meet on Monday to plan for a third summit between Kim and Moon Jae-in, the South Korean president.

The South’s unification ministry did not elaborate on the location of the summit, although Moon had previously agreed to visit Kim in Pyongyang during the autumn.

Some North Korean analysts remain sceptical about recent developments in negotiations, however. Vipin Narang, an associate professor at MIT, called Pompeo’s plan a “delusional nonstarter.”

Writing on his Twitter account he said: “If this is what Pompeo has asked for, it’s no wonder North Korea has called him a “robber” or “gangster-like”. And trying to literally take their nukes away distracts from other realistic objectives like caps.”

One major hurdle to the proposal is that North Korea has not even disclosed how many nuclear bombs it actually has. US intelligence officials believe that estimates over around 65, reported the Washington Post in June.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/08/09/north-korea-rejected-us-timeline-cut-nuclear-arsenal-60-70-per/

 


Tags:

Category: Korea

Print This Post