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North Korea Says Little Reason to Maintain Kim-Trump Ties


FILE - Artwork featuring U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un are displayed at a gallery in Hanoi, Vietnam, Feb. 28, 2019.

North Korea sees little use in maintaining a personal relationship between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump if Washington sticks to hostile policies, state media reported on Friday on the two-year anniversary of the leaders' first summit.

U.S. policies prove Washington remains a long-term threat to the North Korean state and its people, North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Son Gwon said in a statement carried by state news agency KCNA.

The Singapore summit in June 2018 represented the first time a sitting American president met with a North Korean leader, but the statement that came out of the meeting was light on specifics, opting instead for four general commitments.

A second summit in February 2019 in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi, failed to reach a deal because of conflicts over U.S. calls for North Korea to completely give up its nuclear weapons, and North Korean demands for sanctions relief.

FILE - U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un meet during the second U.S.-North Korea summit at the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel in Hanoi, Feb. 28, 2019.
FILE - U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un meet during the second U.S.-North Korea summit at the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel in Hanoi, Feb. 28, 2019.

Ri said in retrospect the Trump administration appears to have been focusing on only scoring political points while seeking to isolate and suffocate North Korea, and threatening it with preemptive nuclear strikes and regime change.

"Never again will we provide the U.S. chief executive with another package to be used for achievements without receiving any returns," he said. "Nothing is more hypocritical than an empty promise."

On Thursday, North Korea criticized the United States for commenting on inter-Korean affairs, and said Washington should stay quiet if it wants the upcoming presidential election to go smoothly.

The U.S. State Department did not respond to requests for comment, and the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On Thursday, a State Department spokesperson told South Korea's Yonhap news agency that the United States remains committed to dialog with North Korea, and is open to a "flexible approach to reach a balanced agreement."

Ri said North Korea's desire to open a new cooperative era runs as deep as ever, but that the situation on the Korean peninsula is daily taking a turn for the worse.

"The U.S. professes to be an advocate for improved relations with the DPRK, but in fact, it is hell-bent on only exacerbating the situation," Ri said.

The official name of North Korea is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

North Korea will continue to build up its military forces to cope with the threats from the United States, Ri said.

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