Experts say North Korea not interested in peace talks

Dec 05, 2017, 09:00 am

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By AsiaToday reporter Heo Go-woon

North Korea is likely to seek a peace treaty after declaring the achievement of completing the state nuclear force with the successful launch of the Hwasong-15 ICBM. However, experts say North Korea is not interested in sitting down at the negotiating table for denuclearization at all and is rather focused on triggering conflicts between South Korea and the U.S..

Kim Young-nam, president of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly of North Korea, told Russian delegates that North Korea is "ready for talks with Washington on the condition that it is recognized as a nuclear power," Russia's news agency TASS reported Friday.

However, the US State Department made it clear Monday that it will not resume dialogue with the North, saying, "It is not enough for (North Korea) to stop its program where it is today."

"North Korea has been recently seeking to hold dialogue with the United States behind the curtains. A demand from the North for an active negotiation was expected after some level of nuclear development. Now the time has come," Chung Young-tae, Director of the Military Research Institute of Dongyang University, told AsiaToday in a telephone interview on Monday. "If it fails to negotiate, the situation will become more complex."

"As North Korea has demonstrated its nuclear force visually, it is possible to push the United States. It seemingly intends to take the initiative in the negotiations with this," Chung said.

Regarding the declaration of the completion of the state nuclear force, Moon Sung-mook, chairman of the Unification Strategy Center of the Korea Research Institute for National Strategy, said, "It seems North Korea is hurriedly strengthening the unity by highlighting Kim Jong-un's accomplishment as the sanctions level of the international society has increased."

However, North Korea and the United States are unlikely to narrow their differences. North Korea is emphasizing that it will never abandon its "Byungjin" (parallel development) policy of 'economy and nuclear weapons' which has been its national development strategy since 2015. The nuclear power state that North Korea demands is a status given only to the United States, Britain, France, China, and Russia, which have built a nuclear explosive device before January 1967. There is no real chance that North Korea will be recognized as a nuclear power,

Some say that North Korea will block the opportunity for dialogue between the two Koreas by going for a peace negotiation with the U.S. as it believes that direct negotiations with the United States will give it more chance to turn over the situation rather than negotiating with South Korea.

"We should go back to the basics and strengthen the US-ROK alliance at this time," Chung said. "The reason why North Korea wants to contact the United States is because it wants to weaken or destroy the US-ROK alliance. We have to demonstrate to the North that the alliance is strengthening."

#North Korea #peace #nuclear state #South Korea #US 
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