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North Korea tells South to stop ‘nonsensical’ denuke talk

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – North Korea on Saturday once more bashed South Korea, telling its rival to cease “nonsensical” discuss its denuclearization and vowing to develop its navy capabilities.

The assertion by senior North Korean Foreign Ministry official Kwon Jong Gun got here after South Korea’s Foreign Ministry advised reporters that Seoul will proceed to work towards bettering bilateral relations and reviving nuclear negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington.

The authorities of South Korean President Moon Jae-in had lobbied exhausting to arrange nuclear summits between North Korean chief Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump, who’ve met 3 times since 2018. At the identical time, Moon additionally labored to enhance inter-Korean relations.

But North Korea in latest months has suspended nearly all cooperation with the South whereas expressing frustration over the dearth of progress in its nuclear negotiations with the Trump administration.

The North over the previous week declared it would minimize off all authorities and navy communication channels with the South and threatened to desert inter-Korean peace agreements reached in 2018. It blamed Seoul for failing to cease activists from floating anti-Pyongyang leaflets throughout the border.

Seoul’s Foreign Ministry was reacting to a separate North Korean assertion late Friday that mentioned the North’s confidence with the South’s authorities was fully “shattered” and that “regretful and painful times” had been forward for its rival.

Kwon, director-general of the Foreign Ministry’s U.S. affairs division, mentioned it was “preposterous to hear the balderdash of (South Korean) authorities, who do not have either any qualification to discuss, or the position to poke their noses into” issues between North Korea and the United States, together with nuclear points. He dismissed South Korea’s position as a mediator between Washington and Pyongyang.

“I want to make it clear that we will continue to build up our force in order to overpower the persistent threats from the United States, and such efforts of ours are in fact continuing at this point of time,” Kwon mentioned in a press release carried by the North’s official Korean Central News Agency.

“We are not what we were two years ago. The change continues and will continue as ever in a tremendous way. It is better to stop a nonsensical talking about denuclearization.”

Nuclear talks faltered after the United States rejected North Korean calls for for main sanctions aid in trade for a partial give up of the North’s nuclear capabilities at Kim’s second summit with Trump in Vietnam in February final yr.

Trump and Kim met for a 3rd time that yr in June on the border between North and South Korea and agreed to renew talks. But an October working-level assembly in Sweden broke down over what the North Koreans described because the Americans’ “old stance and attitude.”

On the two-year anniversary of the primary Kim-Trump assembly on Friday, North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Son Gwon mentioned the North would by no means once more present Trump with high-profile conferences he might boast as international coverage achievements until it will get one thing substantial in return.

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