North Korea says it has lost "year and a half" negotiating with the US

A senior North Korean official regretted today that the Pionyang regime has lost "more than a year and a half" in its negotiations with the United States and accused Washington of "not being ready" to accept the North Korean demands.

The comments of the adviser to the North Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kim Kye-gwan, are contained in a statement released by the official agency of the Pionyang regime, amid a stalemate in the dialogue between the United States and North Korea.

"We have been fooled at the dialogue table with the United States for more than a year and a half, and we have wasted time," says Kim, former vice chancellor and one of North Korea's key figures in diplomatic affairs and nuclear policies.

The North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, and the US president, Donald Trump, have held two formal summits and an informal meeting since June 2018, with a view to achieving denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

The talks, however, are stalled since the meeting that Kim and Trump had last June 30 at the inter-Korean border, although both were willing to move forward with previous contacts to resume the dialogue.

The senior foreign official admits that the relationship between Trump and Kim "is not bad," but adds that it would be "silly" to think that the dialogue between the two countries can be resumed based on that personal relationship between them.

The resumption of negotiations will only be possible if the United States accepts North Korean demands, but, adds Kim Kye Gwan, "we know very well that the United States is not willing to do it, nor can it do so."

The Pionyang regime has been pressuring Washington to lift its economic sanctions against North Korea, and also those of the UN, but the United States is seeking in return the dismantling of the nuclear arsenal of the Asian nation.

In his statement, the senior North Korean official maintains that Trump's recent congratulations to Kim on his birthday was received "directly", despite the fact that from Seoul it was reported that this gesture reached Pionyang through the Government of South Korea.

According to the senior North Korean official, it is "a bit presumptuous" to ensure that Trump's congratulations came to Pionyang through Seoul, insisting on the idea that the United States and North Korea maintain an open and direct channel.


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