US South Korea joint military exercise angered North Korea Washington still hopes to talk with Pyongyang

Despite the Pyongyang authorities’ warning that the US and South Korea will hold military exercises, which may affect the plans for the two countries to restart negotiations, the United States said today that it still hopes to hold denuclearization talks with North Korea.

Agence France-Presse reported that North Korea earlier hinted earlier that if the United States and South Korea will hold military exercises next month, North Korea may even reconsider the suspended nuclear test. The joint military exercise between the United States and South Korea has been going on for a long time, but it has been scaled down in order to promote dialogue with Pyongyang.

A few months after the US-North Korea negotiations reached a stalemate, US President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met in an impromptu meeting in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) in June. Since the two sides agreed to restart the dialogue, North Korea made a statement on the talks for the first time.

In response to the North Korean statement, the US State Department said that the US is still optimistic that Kim Jong-un and Trump held a summit in Hanoi, Vietnam in February, and the two people’s commitments during Trump’s dramatic march on North Korea’s territory on June 30.

State Department spokesman Morgan Ortagus told reporters that from a US perspective, it is hoped that no one in the two governments will try to prevent Trump and Kim Jong-un from making progress on their commitments in Vietnam.

Otagas said: “Of course we are looking forward to restarting those negotiations. We have always hoped to hold talks so that we can make progress on these commitments.”

After Sichuan’s first historic summit in Singapore last year, it reduced the scale of the joint military exercise between the United States and South Korea.

However, an unnamed foreign ministry spokesman in North Korea described the US and South Korean military exercises as “obviously violating” the joint statement signed by the leaders of the two countries in Singapore and hinting that Pyongyang authorities may respond by restarting the weapons test.

According to the contents of the North Korean Central News Agency, the official said: “If this military exercise really appears on schedule, it will affect the working-level talks between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the United States.”

The official said that Pyongyang’s commitment to suspend nuclear testing and long-range missile testing is intended to improve bilateral relations, “not to talk on paper.”

“As the United States unilaterally violates its commitments, we are gradually losing ground for fulfilling our commitments with the United States.”

Credit : https://www.cna.com.tw/news/aopl/201907170074.aspx