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North Korea condemns US sanctions, warns denuclearisation at risk

17 December 2018, 07:30 | Tara Lloyd

North Korea has warned that denuclearisation talks could be blocked forever Credit Ed Jones AFP

North Korea has warned that denuclearisation talks could be blocked forever

The two sides have yet to reschedule working-level talks between the U.S. secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, and his North Korean counterpart Kim Yong-chol that were supposed to have taken place in NY in early November.

These tweets came just a few hours after a report by NBC News on a top-secret US military assessment that had found that North Korea had been effective at evading United Nations sanctions.

Sunday's statement comes after the US announced new sanctions last week against three top North Korean officials: Choe Ryong Hae, who is considered North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's right-hand man; Jong Kyong Thaek, minister of State Security; and Pak Kwang Ho, director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department.

Economic sanctions imposed by the United States are obstructing the diplomatic path to denuclearisation, the North Korean government has warned, in a plea to President Trump to rein in hardline officials in his administration.

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The commentary deliberately focused its criticism on the State Department and administration officials, not at Trump, suggesting that Pyongyang remains open to another summit.

It remains to be seen how the development will fully impact the denuclearization diplomacy.

North Korea has broadcasted warning messages at the NLL, and has not shut the blast doors that protect the regime's artillery, Shin said, adding the North could be using tensions at the border for "future negotiations". Trump has suggested he could meet Kim again early next year. "I always reply by saying we are in no hurry".

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A statement carried by the official North Korean news agency, praised US President Donald Trump for his efforts to improve relations with Pyongyang, but criticised the US State Department for imposing the sanctions.

The statement lamented that Washington has taken "sanctions measures for as many as eight times against the companies, individuals and ships of not only the [North Korea] but also Russia, China and other [s]". "We are doing just fine!"

The latest sanctions were announced weeks after a high-stakes meeting between North Korean officials and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was abruptly canceled.

"DPRK [Democratic People's Republic of Korea]-US relations are advancing along the steadfast will of the top leaders", says the statement, attributed to an official of the country's foreign ministry.

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