Rea­son­able de­mands should be re­sponded to

Ma­jor dif­fer­ences re­main be­tween DPRK, US over de­nu­cle­ariza­tion

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - WORLD - By XIN­HUA

US Sec­re­tary of State Mike Pom­peo paid his third visit to the Demo­cratic Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Korea on Sun­day.

He held talks with DPRK top leader Kim Jong-un. The two sides agreed that their coun­tries would hold a sec­ond sum­mit as quickly as pos­si­ble. Kim also in­vited in­ter­na­tional in­spec­tors to visit the Pung­gye Ri nu­clear test site to con­firm that it had been ir­re­versibly dis­man­tled.

De­spite the cur­rent mood of de­tente in DPRK-US re­la­tions, the two sides still need to over­come ma­jor dif­fer­ences prior to reach­ing a com­plete de­nu­cle­ariza­tion of the Korean Penin­sula.

Un­der a joint state­ment signed by Kim and US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump in Sin­ga­pore in June, the United States com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing a se­cu­rity guar­an­tee to the DPRK in re­turn for Py­ongyang’s com­mit­ment to de­nu­cle­ariza­tion.

How­ever, their talks have been stuck in an im­passe due to dif­fer­ences over the scale of de­nu­cle­ariza­tion, strict US sanc­tions, and whether to is­sue a war-end­ing dec­la­ra­tion.

At the 73rd UN Gen­eral Assem­bly, DPRK For­eign Min­is­ter Ri Yong-ho de­manded the US take steps to se­cure Py­ongyang’s trust be­fore it de­nu­cle­arizes.

“With­out any trust in the US, there will be no con­fi­dence in our na­tional se­cu­rity, and un­der such cir­cum­stances there is no way we will uni­lat­er­ally dis­arm our­selves first,” Ri said.

Even be­fore the Sin­ga­pore sum­mit, the DPRK ceased all nu­clear and bal­lis­tic mis­sile tests and dis­man­tled the Pung­gye Ri nu­clear test site as a ges­ture of good­will.

Wash­ing­ton and Py­ongyang have sparred over the ex­act terms of the vaguely-worded deal in Sin­ga­pore. The US in­sists on main­tain­ing sanc­tions and pres­sure against the DPRK un­til its “fi­nal, fully ver­i­fied de­nu­cle­ariza­tion”.

Reaf­firmed sanc­tions

Dur­ing the first stop of his Asia tour, Pom­peo met Ja­pa­nese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe. The two al­lied coun­tries reaf­firmed that sanc­tions should be im­ple­mented un­til the DPRK de­nu­cle­arizes.

Fur­ther­more, the DPRK said a dec­la­ra­tion end­ing the 1950-53 Korean War should not be used as a bar­gain­ing chip in de­nu­cle­ariza­tion talks.

Be­sides hold­ing firm on its own sanc­tions against the DPRK, the US is also med­dling in the im­prov­ing ties be­tween the DPRK and the Repub­lic of Korea.

On Wed­nes­day, Trump told re­porters at the White House that Seoul will not lift sanc­tions on Py­ongyang with­out US ap­proval, af­ter ROK For­eign Min­is­ter Kang Kyung-wha sug­gested that Seoul was con­sid­er­ing eas­ing its own sanc­tions against the DPRK to en­cour­age its de­nu­cle­ariza­tion.

In Seoul, the for­eign min­is­ter con­firmed re­ports that Pom­peo ex­pressed dis­plea­sure over an agree­ment reached be­tween the ROK and the DPRK last month to re­duce con­ven­tional mil­i­tary threats be­tween them.

Even though the world has wit­nessed pos­i­tive de­vel­op­ment con­cern­ing the Korean Penin­su­lar nu­clear is­sue over the last few months, in­clud­ing in­creased vis­its and di­a­logue, mu­tual trust and sin­cer­ity are still lack­ing in the in­ter­ac­tions on the ground.

Chi­nese For­eign Min­is­ter Wang Yi has said that the penin­sula is­sue is one of se­cu­rity in essence, and the DPRK’s rea­son­able de­mands for safety and de­vel­op­ment should be re­sponded to pos­i­tively.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.