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North Korean Diplomat on Trump Election: 'We Do Not Care'

  • Margaret Besheer

A TV screen shows pictures of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, right, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Nov. 10, 2016.

A TV screen shows pictures of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, right, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Nov. 10, 2016.

North Korean state media initially praised Donald Trump during his presidential campaign, but following Trump's victory a senior official expressed indifference about the incoming president.

"We do not care about whoever becomes the president of the United States," Kim Yong Ho, the North Korean Foreign Ministry's director of the division of human rights and humanitarian issues, told reporters at the United Nations.

"The fundamental issue here is whether or not the United States has the political will to withdraw its hostile policy toward the DPRK."

Kim Yong Ho, the North Korean Foreign Ministry's director of the division of human rights and humanitarian issues during a press briefing at the U.N., Nov. 15, 2016.

Kim Yong Ho, the North Korean Foreign Ministry's director of the division of human rights and humanitarian issues during a press briefing at the U.N., Nov. 15, 2016.

During his presidential campaign Donald Trump had suggested that American forces could withdraw from South Korea if the two countries could not agree on a fairer agreement to support the troops stationed there.

North Korea urged Trump to help unify the peninsula by removing the troops. A North Korean state media organization around the time called Trump a "wise politician" and "far sighted" presidential candidate.

The United States has long said that it will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea and has imposed multiple rounds of strict sanctions over Pyongyang's pursuit of nuclear technology. The six-party talks aimed at verifiably dismantling the program in exchange for sanctions relief and aid have been stalled since 2009.

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