(National Sentinel) Defense: Perhaps the young, chubby leader of North Korea isn’t a madman after all, with reports suggesting Saturday that under the ‘right conditions,’ Kim Jong-un would be willing to open new discussions related to the North’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.
As reported by Fox News:
Choi Son Hui, North Korea’s foreign ministry director general for U.S. affairs, spoke briefly with reporters on Saturday in Beijing on route to Pyongyang. She was traveling from Norway, where she led a delegation that held an informal meeting with U.S. experts.
The diplomat’s comments seemed to mirror that of President Trump’s from an interview earlier this month with Bloomberg News.
“If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, I would be honored to do it,” Trump said, adding: “If it’s under the, again, under the right circumstances. But I would do that.”
For her part, Choi did not elaborate on what those conditions would be, but the Trump administration has made it clear in the past it is not willing to engage in endless negotiations that are not productive – which has been the modus operandi of past administrations, and to no avail.
North Korea has conducted five nuclear weapons tests and has been threatening a sixth, but both the United States and China have warned Pyongyang there could be dire consequences if it does conduct an additional test.
Pyongyang has said it could conduct that sixth test “at any time.”
In Norway, Choi met with former U.S. officials and scholars for what are known as “track 2” talks. The talks, which cover a range of nuclear, security and bilateral issues, are held intermittently, and are an informal opportunity for the two sides to exchange opinions and concerns, The Associated Press noted.
Meanwhile, South Korea’s news agency, Yonhap, reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin pledged to help denuclearize the peninsula through enhanced cooperation with Seoul.
“I believe Russia is our country’s best partner in working to ensure the peace and prosperity of Eurasia,” the new South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, told Putin, according to his presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.
“I hope Russia will play a constructive role to help place North Korea back on the track to denuclearization. I too plan to seek the early resumption of South-North dialogue and six-party talks,” Moon was quoted as saying.
A key pledge by Moon prior to his election was to restart those nuclear talks with North Korea, but again, the Trump administration has expressed little interest in talks that are self-perpetuating and that don’t begin producing solid, tangible results.
Trump does not seem willing to settle for anything less than complete North Korean nuclear disarmament.