N. Korea urges US shift on de­nu­cle­ari­sa­tion

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

SEOUL: North Korea yes­ter­day warned the in­com­ing Don­ald Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion will have to ac­knowl­edge it as a nu­clear state, as the South said the mogul had pledged to pro­tect it.

The US main­tains it can­not ac­cept North Korea as a nu­clear power, de­spite it con­duct­ing five nu­clear tests and has pushed harsh in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions against the regime.

“If there is any­thing the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion has done... it has put the se­cu­rity of the US main­land in the great­est dan­ger,” said an edi­to­rial car­ried by Py­ongyang’s rul­ing party news­pa­per Rodong Sin­mun.

“It has bur­dened the new ad­min­is­tra­tion with the dif­fi­culty of fac­ing the Juche nu­clear state,” it said, re­fer­ring to the North Korean ide­ol­ogy usu­ally trans­lated as “self-re­liance”.

The edi­to­rial, which did not men­tion Trump by name, fol­lows grow­ing calls for the US to change tack on North Korea, with US Di­rec­tor of Na­tional In­tel­li­gence James Clap­per re­cently la­belling at­tempts to de­nu­cle­arise it a lost cause.

Trump has not laid out a clear di­rec­tion for his pol­icy on North Korea but has in­di­cated that he would be open to talks with Kim Jong-Un.

Trump caused con­ster­na­tion dur­ing his cam­paign when he threat­ened to with­draw troops un­less Seoul paid more for their up­keep, and sug­gested South Korea and Ja­pan de­velop nu­clear weapons to counter the North’s threats.

But in a phone call with South Korean leader Park Geun-Hye yes­ter­day, Trump vowed that US com­mit­ment on pro­tect­ing its ally against the North “will not wa­ver” and said: “We are go­ing to be with you 100%.”

Mean­while, Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe is to meet Trump next week, of­fi­cials said yes­ter­day, after phone talks be­tween the two fol­low­ing the bil­lion­aire’s elec­tion win. – AFP

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