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No sincerity in Pyongyang’s proposal for talks with Washington

No sincerity in Pyongyang’s proposal for talks with Washington

Posted June. 17, 2013 02:38,   


North Korea’s proposal on North Korea-U.S. talks is more like propaganda without sincerity. Pyongyang says it wants talks while criticizing Washington for a large part and pushes Washington to acknowledge that it is a nuclear country, claiming denuclearization is the teaching of late leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Pyongyang seems puzzled at the Seoul-Washington cooperation and Beijing’s changed stance.

North Korea mounted tensions by launching a long-range missile in December 2012 and the third nuclear test in February this year, but was rather cornered by the strong response and sanctions of the international community. Under the new leadership led by President Xi Jinping, China strongly urges Pyongyang to give up nuclear weapons. Pyongyang must have proposed talks to Washington, expecting the pattern that leads from provocation, talks to rewards. Washington is unlikely to be lured into its trick again, however. Its gimmick to play Seoul against Washington is obvious. Soon after taking issue with the level of the South Korean chief negotiator and cancelling inter-Korean talks, North Korea proposed the U.S. for talks.

Pyongyang has claimed that the U.S. caused the Korean War, and that it didn’t invade the South. Though it maintained that denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula is the teaching of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, Kim Jong Il led the first and second nuclear test when alive. Who would believe Pyongyang that argues Kim Jong Il who openly sought nuclear armament is the leader who claimed denuclearization? It is impudent that Kim Jong Un, who ordered the third nuclear test and stipulated that North Korea is a nuclear country in its constitution, talks about denuclearization.

If Pyongyang is willing to address the issue with Washington, it should reflect upon its breaking of North Korea- U.S. agreement. In the Feb. 29 agreement last year, the North announced it received 240,000 tons of food aid in return for suspending nuclear tests, long-range missile launches, and uranium enrichment. But in less than two months, it launched a long-range missile on April 13, invalidating the agreement. This happened during President Barack Obama’s term. Washington may ponder upon North Korea’s unexpected proposal, but President Obama who strongly distrusts Pyongyang would not readily accept the proposal.

U.S. President Obama and Chinese President Xi announced in the summit early this month that they cannot accept North Korea’s nuclear grandstanding but also tolerate its nuclear development. Washington urged that Pyongyang should show a practical action for giving up nuclear weapons to resume talks with it. Former Chinese State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan said, “When meeting with Choi Ryong Hae, the director of the General Political Bureau of the North Korean People’s Army, last month, President Xi made clear that China can neither accept nor support North Korea’s nuclear weapons.” It is delusional that Pyongyang can shake the strong perception of Washington and Beijing with a commentary of its Defense Committee. There is no reason for Washington to rush talks with Pyongyang at a time when the inter-Korean talks are stalled.

If Pyongyang wants to get out of the current crisis, it still has a chance. It is to make a detailed promise and show an action to give up nuclear weapons around the summit talks between Seoul and Beijing on June 27. It is the only way to get a straw of hope for resuming talks. Its proposal for talks with Washington is like seeking hot water under cold ice.