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Imperiled DPRK-US Summit – North Korea’s Statement


South Korean F-16 © Cpl. Carlos Jimenez, USMC / Reuters


In response to last week’s start up of a new round of war games, Max Thunder 2018, in disregard of the Panmunjom Agreement of April 27, 2018, in which “South and North Korea agreed to completely cease all hostile acts against each other in every domain, including land, air and sea, that are the source of military tension and conflict,” North Korea canceled high level talks with South Korea, May 16, 2018, and issued a statement warning that it may cancel the the summit meeting between President Trump and Chairman Kim, scheduled for June 12, 2018. “If the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue and cannot but reconsider our proceeding to the DPRK-U.S.summit,” the statement reads.  

What follows is the official English and Korean text of the statement by Kim Kye Gwan, First Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Press Statement by Kim Kye Gwan, First Vice- Minister of Foreign Affairs of the DPRK

Comrade Kim Jong Un, chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, made a strategic decision to put an end to the unpleasant history of the DPRK-U.S. relations and met Pompeo, U.S. secretary of state for two times during his visit to our country and took very important and broad-minded steps for peace and stability on the Korean peninsula and over the world.  In response to the noble intention of comrade chairman of the State Affairs Commission, president Trump stated his position for terminating the historically deep-rooted hostility and improving the relations between the DPRK and the U.S. I appreciated the position positively with an expectation that upcoming DPRK-U.S. summit would be a big step forward for catalyzing detente on the Korean peninsula and building a great future. But now prior to the DPRK-U.S. summit, unbridled remarks provoking the other side of dialogue are recklessly made in the U.S. and I am totally disappointed as these constitute extremely unjust behavior.  High-ranking officials of the White House and Department of State including Bolton, White House national security adviser are letting loose the assertions of so-called Libya mode of nuclear abandonment, “complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization”, “total decommissioning of nuclear weapons, missiles, biochemical weapons” etc, while talking about formula of “abandoning nuclear weapons first, compensating afterwards”. This is not an expression of intention to address the issue through dialogue. It is essentially a manifestation of awfully sinister move to impose on our dignified state the destiny of Libya or Iraq which had been collapsed due to yielding the whole of their countries to big powers. I cannot suppress indignation at such moves of the U.S. and harbor doubt about the U.S. sincerity for improved DPRK-U.S. relations through sound dialogue and negotiations. World knows too well that our country is neither Libya nor Iraq which have met miserable fate.

It is absolutely absurd to dare compare the DPRK, nuclear weapon state, to Libya which had been at the initial stage of nuclear development. We shed light on the quality of Bolton already in the past, and we do not hide our feeling of repugnance towards him. If Trump administration fails to recall the lessons learned from the past when the DPRK-U.S. talks had to undergo twists and setbacks owing to the likes of Bolton and turns its ear to the advice of quasi-“patriots” who insist on Libya mode and the like, prospects of upcoming DPRK-U.S. summit and overall DPRK-U.S. relations will be crystal clear. We have already stated our intention for denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and made clear on several occasions that precondition for denuclearization is to put an end to anti-DPRK hostile policy and nuclear threats and blackmail of the United States. But now, the U.S. is miscalculating the magnanimity and broad-minded initiatives of the DPRK as signs of weakness and trying to embellish and advertise as if these are the product of its sanctions and pressure. The U.S. is trumpeting as if it would offer economic compensation and benefit in case we abandon nuke. But we have never ever had any expectation of U.S. support in carrying out our economic construction and will not at all make such a deal in future too. It is a ridiculous comedy to see that Trump administration, claiming to take a different road from the previous administrations, still clings to the outdated policy on the DPRK – a policy pursued by previous administrations at the time when the DPRK was at the stage of nuclear development.  If president Trump follows in the footsteps of his predecessors, he will be recorded as more tragic and unsuccessful president than his predecessors, far from his initial ambition to make unprecedented success.  If Trump administration takes an approach to the DPRK-U.S. summit with sincerity for improved DPRK-U.S. relations, it will receive a deserved response from us. However, if the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment, we will no longer be interested in such dialogue and cannot but reconsider our proceeding to the DPRK-U.S. summit.

Pyongyang, May 16, Juche 107(2018)

조선민주주의인민공화국 외무성 김계관 제1부상 담화  조선민주주의인민공화국 국무위원회 위원장 김정은동지께서는  조미관계의 불미스러운 력사를 끝장내려는 전략적결단을 내리시고 우리 나라를 방문한 폼페오 미국무장관을 두차례나 접견해주시였으며 조선반도와 세계의 평화와 안정을 위하여 참으로 중대하고 대범한 조치들을 취해주시였다. 국무위원회 위원장동지의 숭고한 뜻에 화답하여 트럼프대통령이 력사적뿌리가 깊은 적대관계를 청산하고 조미관계를 개선하려는 립장을 표명한데 대하여 나는 긍정적으로 평가하였으며 다가오는 조미수뇌회담이 조선반도의 정세완화를 추동하고 훌륭한 미래를 건설하기 위한 큰 걸음으로 될것이라고 기대하였다. 그런데 조미수뇌회담을 앞둔 지금 미국에서 대화상대방을 심히 자극하는 망발들이 마구 튀여나오고있는것은 극히 온당치 못한 처사로서 실망하지 않을수 없다. 백악관 국가안보보좌관 볼튼을 비롯한 백악관과 국무성의 고위관리들은 《선 핵포기,후 보상》방식을 내돌리면서 그 무슨 리비아핵포기방식이니,《완전하고 검증가능하며 되돌릴수 없는 비핵화》니,《핵,미싸일,생화학무기의 완전페기》니 하는 주장들을 꺼리낌없이 쏟아내고있다. 이것은 대화를 통해 문제를 해결하려는것이 아니라 본질에 있어서 대국들에게 나라를 통채로 내맡기고 붕괴된 리비아나 이라크의 운명을 존엄높은 우리 국가에 강요하려는 심히 불순한 기도의 발현이다. 나는 미국의 이러한 처사에 격분을 금할수 없으며 과연 미국이 진정으로 건전한 대화와 협상을 통하여 조미관계개선을 바라고 있는가에 대하여 의심하게 된다. 세계는 우리 나라가 처참한 말로를 걸은 리비아나 이라크가 아니라는데 대하여 너무도 잘 알고있다. 핵개발의 초기단계에 있었던 리비아를 핵보유국인 우리국가와 대비하는것자체가 아둔하기 짝이 없다. 우리는 이미 볼튼이 어떤 자인가를 명백히 밝힌바있으며 지금도 그에 대한 거부감을 숨기지 않는다. 트럼프행정부가 지난기간 조미대화가 진행될때마다 볼튼과 같은 자들때문에 우여곡절을 겪지않으면 안되였던 과거사를 망각하고 리비아핵포기방식이요 뭐요 하는 사이비《우국지사》들의 말을 따른다면 앞으로 조미수뇌회담을 비롯한 전반적인 조미관계전망이 어떻게 되리라는것은 불보듯 명백하다. 우리는 이미 조선반도비핵화용의를 표명하였고 이를 위하여서는 미국의 대조선적대시정책과 핵위협공갈을 끝장내는것이 그 선결조건으로 된다는데 대하여 수차에 걸쳐 천명하였다. 그런데 지금 미국은 우리의 아량과 대범한 조치들을 나약성의 표현으로 오판하면서 저들의 제재압박공세의 결과로 포장하여 내뜨리려 하고있다. 미국이 우리가 핵을 포기하면 경제적보상과 혜택을 주겠다고 떠들고있는데 우리는 언제한번 미국에 기대를 걸고 경제건설을 해본적이 없으며 앞으로도 그런 거래를 절대로 하지않을것이다. 전행정부들과 다른 길을 걸을것이라고 주장하고있는 트럼프 행정부가 우리의 핵이 아직 개발단계에 있을때 이전 행정부들이 써먹던 케케묵은 대조선정책안을 그대로 만지작거리고있다는것은 유치한 희극이 아닐수 없다. 만일 트럼프대통령이 전임자들의 전철을 답습한다면 이전 대통령들이 이룩하지 못한 최상의 성과물을 내려던 초심과는 정반대로 력대대통령들보다 더 무참하게 실패한 대통령으로 남게 될것이다. 트럼프행정부가 조미관계개선을 위한 진정성을 가지고 조미수뇌회담에 나오는 경우 우리의 응당한 호응을 받게 될것이지만 우리를 구석으로 몰고가 일방적인 핵포기만을 강요하려 든다면 우리는 그러한 대화에 더는 흥미를 가지지 않을것이며 다가오는 조미수뇌회담에 응하겠는가를 재고려할수밖에 없을것이다.

주체 107(2018)년 5월 16일 평양.

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