SEOUL - North Korea has angrily walked away from working-level nuclear talks with the United States. Pyongyang’s top negotiator said he was “greatly disappointed” with Washington’s inflexible approach.
The first substantive nuclear negotiations in months between North Korea and the U.S. broke down after just one day in Stockholm, Sweden.
North Korea’s top nuclear envoy says the talks failed because the U.S. would not abandon its old approach.
The U.S. quickly disputed that characterization, saying the 8-and-a-half-hour talks went “good” and that the U.S. brought “creative ideas.”
The breakdown raises the possibility North Korea will intensify its provocations, days after testing a new medium-range ballistic missile.
But the North’s decision could also amount to a negotiating tactic meant to raise pressure on Washington.
U.S. President Donald Trump appeared to use a similar tactic this February in Vietnam, when he abruptly walked away from a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
After that summit, both sides quickly said they would eventually like to resume diplomacy. But neither have indicated they will substantially change their negotiating stance.
U.S. officials say they accepted a Swedish invitation to return to the talks in two weeks. It’s not clear whether North Korea will show up.