FM Spokesman on DPRK-US High-level Talks
In the wake of the first historic DPRK-US summit meeting and talks, the international community has focused its expectation and attention on the bilateral high-level talks for implementing the joint statement of the summit talks.
The DPRK side had expected the US side would come with a constructive proposal, which would be conducive to building confidence, in keeping with the spirit of the summit meeting and talks, and thought of doing something commensurate with that.
However, the US side’s attitude and stand at the first high-level talks on July 6 and 7 were so regrettable.
The DPRK side, during the talks, put forward the constructive proposals to seek a balanced implementation of all the provisions of the joint statement, out of its invariable willingness to faithfully implement the spirit and agreed points of the summit meeting and talks.
It proposed discussing the matters of taking wide-ranging actions simultaneously such as realizing multilateral exchanges for improved relations, making public a declaration on the end of war on the occasion of the 65th anniversary of the conclusion of the Korean Armistice Agreement first in the efforts to build a peace mechanism on the Korean peninsula, dismantling the high-thrust engine test site to make a physical verification of the suspension of ICBM manufacture as part of the measure for denuclearization and making an earliest start of the working-level negotiations for recovering POW/MIA remains.
Prior to the talks, Kim Yong Chol, vice-chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, who was also chief delegate of the DPRK side to the talks, upon authorization, handed over to State Secretary Pompeo, who was chief delegate of the US side, a personal letter sent by Kim Jong Un, chairman of the DPRK State Affairs Commission, to US President Trump.
In the letter the Chairman expressed his expectation and conviction that good friendly relations forged with President Trump through the Singapore summit meeting and talks and his confidence in the latter would be consolidated further in the process of future dialogue including the current high-level talks.
The US side, however, came out with only unilateral and gangster-like demand for denuclearization, just talking about CVID, declaration and verification contrary to the spirit of the Singapore summit meeting and talks.
The US side, without mentioning the issue of establishing a peace regime on the Korean peninsula which is essential for preventing the aggravation of situation and a war, took the attitude of even backtracking on the already agreed issue of declaring the end of war while attaching certain conditions and making certain excuses.
As for the issue of announcing the declaration of the end of war as early as possible, it is the first process of defusing tension and establishing a lasting peace mechanism on the Korean peninsula and, at the same time, the primary factor in building confidence between the DPRK and the US. This issue is also stipulated in the Panmunjom Declaration adopted between the north and south of Korea as a historic task of terminating the state of war that has persisted on the Korean peninsula for nearly 70 years, and President Trump was more enthusiastic about the issue at the DPRK-US summit talks.
The matters the US side insisted on at the talks are the stumbling block which the previous administrations had clung to, thereby disrupting dialogue processes, stoking distrust and increasing the danger of war.
The US side, during the talks, overplayed as a big concession the temporary cancellation of one or two joint military exercises. But the suspension of such one action as military rehearsal is a highly reversible step which can be resumed at any moment anytime as all of its military forces remain intact in their positions without scrapping even a rifle. It is incomparable with the irreversible step the DPRK took to explode and scrap its nuclear test site.
The results of the talks cannot but be termed a thing of extremely serious concern.
We had thought that the US side would come with a constructive proposal in conformity with the spirit of the DPRK-US summit meeting and talks, but our expectation and hope were so naive as to be called foolish.
Outdated ways can never create new things, and following the trite ever-failing stereotype will only result in another failure.
The valuable agreement was made in such a short time at the Singapore summit talks, first ever in the history of DPRK-US relations, because President Trump himself suggested adopting a new way to resolve the issues of bilateral relations and the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.
If both sides go back to the old way by abandoning the new way agreed at the summit at the working level, the Singapore summit would be meaningless, an epoch-making meeting which was held thanks to the determination and will of the two top leaders to shape a new future in the interests of the peoples of the two countries and for peace and security of the world.
The first DPRK-US high-level talks brought us in a dangerous situation where we may be shaken in our once unshakable will for denuclearization, rather than consolidating confidence between the two countries.
In the last few months, we took well-intentioned measures as much as possible first, while watching the US with the maximum patience.
But, the US seems to have misunderstood our goodwill and patience.
It is fundamentally mistaken as much as to think that the DPRK would accept, out of patience, even the demands reflecting its gangster-like mentality.
A shortcut to the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula is to remove deep-rooted mistrust and build confidence between the DPRK and the US. To this end, both sides should be bold enough to be free from the old ways which only ended in failure and take a fresh approach which is never bound by the existing ones, and solve the problems one by one from the feasible ones on the principle of simultaneous actions while giving priority to confidence building.
But if the US is so anxious that it tries to force upon us the old ways claimed by the previous administrations, this will be of no help to the solution of issues.
If the objective situation fails to be created in favour of the denuclearization against our will, it would rather mess up the current of developing bilateral relations which had got off to a good start.
If a headwind begins to blow, it would greatly disappoint the international community desirous of global peace and security as well as both the DPRK and the US and, if so, both sides would probably try to seek different choices and there is no guarantee that it will not lead to a tragedy.
We still cherish our confidence in President Trump.
The US is advised to seriously consider whether tolerating the headwind against the will of the two top leaders conforms to the aspirations and expectation of the world people as well as its interests.