SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea says it's not interested in a deal similar to the one reached on curbing Iran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.
An unidentified Foreign Ministry spokesman said Tuesday that the North's nuclear deterrent is "not a plaything to be put on the negotiating table" because it's essential to cope with threats from the United States.
He said North Korea consequently has no intention of joining any talks to discuss the issue of making it freeze or dismantle its nuclear program unilaterally as long as the U.S. maintains its hostile policies toward it.
The statement, carried by the North's official Korean Central News Agency, was Pyongyang's first official response to the Iranian nuclear deal.
International nuclear talks on North Korea's weapons program have been stalled since 2009.