North Korea's UK ambassador rejects Trump's offer of talks

AP News
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Posted: May 24, 2016 1:13 PM
North Korea's UK ambassador rejects Trump's offer of talks

LONDON (AP) — North Korea's ambassador to Britain said Tuesday that his country has no interest in presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's offer to open nuclear talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Ambassador Hyon Hak Bong said that Pyongyang views Trump's offer as an electoral ploy that isn't serious.

Hyon said that "we see it as the dramatics of a popular actor," adding that U.S. presidential candidates say a lot of things during a campaign but once they assume power they always adopt a hostile stance toward North Korea.

The timing is not right for talks, he said.

"North Korea has no package ready — the United States also has no package ready — to advance relations between the two countries," he said. "No progress can be made. That is why we say we have no interest whatever in remarks made by him."

Trump said last week that he is open to meeting with Kim Jong Un, which would represent a sharp alteration in U.S. policy.

The Obama administration says it is willing to resume talks with North Korea, but only if Pyongyang commits itself to the goal of abandoning its nuclear weapons program.

Hyon said North Korea needs its nuclear weapons for self-defense and to protect its sovereignty.

He said the "six-party talks" aimed at ending his country's nuclear weapons program through negotiations are "dead."

No sitting U.S. president has met with the leader of North Korea.