Meanwhile, US took possession and sold seized the North Korean cargo ship, Wise Honest.
A North Korean official indicates that the rogue nation is growing impatient with the U.S. over stalled nuclear talks, warning of “exchange of fire.”
Kim Yong Chol said in a statement there has been no progress in U.S.-North Korea relations. He warned that the cordial relationship between dictator Kim Jong Un and President Trump wouldn’t be enough to prevent nuclear diplomacy from failing, threatening that “there could be the exchange of fire at any moment.”
North Korea set a year-end deadline to find common ground and mutual terms for the possible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Chol said Sunday the U.S. would be “seriously mistaken” to ignore the deadline.
North Korean officials are upset that the American team is not budging from its demand for “final and fully verified denuclearization.”
The North issued a similar statement on Thursday that was attributed to veteran diplomat Kim Kye Gwan. He criticized U.S. officials for maintaining “Cold War mentality and ideological prejudice” and urged the United States to act “wisely” through the end of the year.
“My hope is that the diplomatic adage that there is neither permanent foe nor permanent friend does not change into the one that there is a permanent foe but no permanent friend,” Kim Yong Chol said, stressing that the United States would fail if it tries to use the “close personal relations” between Trump and Kim for delaying tactics.
He said the United States was getting on North Korea’s nerves by demanding its “final and fully verified denuclearization” while pushing other U.N. countries to strengthen sanctions and pressure on the North. He said Washington has been attempting to “isolate and stifle” North Korea in a “more crafty and vicious way than before,” instead of heeding Kim Jong Un’s call to change its approach in nuclear negotiations.
One intriguing report, however, indicates that time might be on America’s side. North Korean defector and its former diplomat Thae Yong-ho recently explained that there is a generational divide over how the people in his country view the United States.
“The majority of the people in North Korea, nowadays they do not mind [the U.S.] — especially the millennials,” Thae told Yahoo Finance on the sidelines of the 2019 Oslo Freedom Forum. “The core class [holds] very strong hatred towards the U.S. … and the people [are] brainwashed, that America is always looking [to] attack … but the millennials, these days they think differently because they were the ones who have grown up with Windows systems and Microsoft” (MSFT).
Thae, who was North Korea’s deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom, defected to South Korea in 2016. He is one of the highest-ranking officials to defect from the so-called Hermit Kingdom.
“So even though they were taught that America is their sworn enemy, everyone has computers and knowledge… they know Bill Gates,” he said, adding that North Korean millennials “are really thirsty for information. That’s why they are different from their previous generations.”
To round out this update on North Korea: The US won a federal court battle to take ownership of a North Korean ship that was seized last year for violating U.N. economic sanctions and took possession of the vessel. The ship subsequently was sold. The monies will go toward the court judgments won by the families of two victims of North Korean torture (Otto Warmbier, the U.S. college student, and the Rev. Dong Shik Kim, whom North Korea tortured before executing in 2000).DONATE
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