US National Security Advisor John Bolton (file photo)
US National Security Advisor John Bolton (file photo)

Bolton says N Korea 'unwilling' to reach denuclearisation deal with US

ANI | Updated: Mar 18, 2019 05:20 IST

New York [USA], Mar 18 (ANI): US' National Security Advisor (NSA) John Bolton on Sunday hit out at North Korea, asserting that they were "unfortunately not willing" to take steps to finalise a deal with the US aimed at Pyongyang's denuclearisation.
“The North Koreans were unfortunately not willing to do what they needed to do. Just last night they issued an unhelpful statement that they’re thinking of going back to nuclear and ballistic missile testing, which would not be a good idea on their part,” The Hill quoted Bolton as saying while speaking at a radio host show here.
“President Trump wants this threat resolved through negotiations. He wants North Korea to be free of nuclear weapons, that’s for sure,” he added.
Bolton's remarks came two days after North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui slammed at the US over its "gangster-like" demands on denuclearisation, threatening to suspend talks with Washington and resume missile launches and nuclear tests.
"We have no intention to yield to the US demands (put forward at the Hanoi summit) in any form, nor are we willing to engage in negotiations of this kind," she said.
Choe blamed Washington for not reaching a consensus in Hanoi and said the US "was too busy with pursuing their own political interests and had no sincere intention to achieve a result."
Furthermore, Bolton batted for China's role in putting back the stalled negotiations on track between the US and North Korea.
“The idea that there’s a role for China in the negotiations is something that we’d be willing to consider if we could see some movement on North Korea’s part,” he said.
Underlining that China, which is North Korea's chief ally, also wished for a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula, the US NSA put forth, “The Chinese have said repeatedly they don’t want to see North Korea with nuclear weapons at all because they think it destabilizes North East Asia.
"In theory, China has the same position we do. What they could do more of is apply more pressure on North Korea. They could apply the UN sanctions more tightly. They control 90 per cent of North Korea’s external trade, so China could have a very important role here. There’s no question about it.”
“China is building up its nuclear capacity now. It’s one of the reasons why we’re looking at strengthening our national missile defence system here in the United States. And it’s one reason why if we’re going to have another arms control negotiation, for example, with the Russians, it may make sense to include China that discussion as well,” Bolton further said.
On February 27 and 28, US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had met for the second time in Vietnam's Hanoi city, which ended in a stalemate with no agreement reached amid several reports surfaced by South Korea's spy agency and two American think tanks speculating that restoration work was underway at the long-range missile launch site in Dongchang-ri in North Korea.
There are also speculations about North Korea's possible preparation to launch a missile or a satellite-carrying rocket, which has also been reported by the US media, wherein they stated that there has been an increase in the activity at the missile assembly facility in Sanum-dong.
Ties between the US and North Korea have hit a roadblock over the ease of sanctions, where Pyongyang sought relief as recognition of the steps taken towards denuclearisation.
Washington has, until now, reinforced that relief in sanctions would only be given after the communist country carries out "complete and verifiable" denuclearisation.
Meanwhile, a pro-North Korean newspaper, Choson Sinbo, based in Japan has demanded that US should drop its "unilateral" and "unfair" demands in denuclearisation talks with North Korea, warning that the negotiations will not move forward. (ANI)