Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

North Korea expanding missile plant

US National Security Adviser John Bolton speaks during a press conference in Moscow US National Security Adviser John Bolton speaks during a press conference in Moscow
Cary Marshall | 06 July, 2018, 22:51

National Security Adviser John Bolton said he wouldn't comment on intelligence matters, but said the administration is "very well aware of North Korea's pattern of behaviour" while negotiating with the US.

This would put South Korea's security and its alliance with the United States "at a crossroads between life and death", said Kim Taewoo, a former president of the Korea Institute of National Unification.

He said the one-year program the U.S.is proposing would cover all of the Norths chemical and biological weapons, nuclear programs and ballistic missiles. The declaration will be the first real test of the North's candour, amid increasing concern that it may be trying to hide parts of its nuclear program.

A U.S. delegation met over the weekend with North Korean counterparts at the border between North and South Korea to discuss the next steps to implementing the June 12 summit's declaration, according to the U.S. State Department.

North Korea has repeatedly demanded security guarantees in exchange for any denuclearization, arguing that the goal of the Kim regime's nuclear weapons program is to protect the communist dictatorship from a theoretical American attack.

The accuracy and completeness of the inventory, which the US will able to partially verify based on spy satellite images and other intelligence, will tell whether North Korea is serious about giving up the nukes.

US President Donald Trump says talks with North Korea are "going well", claiming that without him, the United States "would now be at war with North Korea".

Given North Korea's long history of deception, such reports are likely to raise more questions about exactly what was achieved at Singapore.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to meet with North Korean officials soon to continue negotiations.

More news: Hawaii bans certain sunscreens to protect coral reefs

"We're looking at the tail end of this major push on the nuclear missile program and economic development", he said, adding it may also be an effort to increase leverage ahead of more detailed negotiations.

Bolton's remarks on CBS's "Face the Nation" appeared to be the first time the Trump administration had publicly suggested a timeline for North Korea to fulfill the commitment Kim made at the summit with Trump for the "complete denuclearization" of the Korean Peninsula.

"I think they're very serious about it".

"This is why people want North Korea to declare all its facilities up front", Wit said.

"Now we're saving a lot of money", Trump said of the cancellation of large-scale military drills that involve flights of U.S. bombers from the Pacific U.S. territory of Guam.

Mr Trump, who tweeted after his summit with Kim that Americans could "sleep well tonight" because he has reduced the threat, said he believes Pyongyang will keep its word to disarm.

The rival Koreas on Wednesday began two days of friendly basketball games in Pyongyang in their latest goodwill gesture amid a diplomatic push to resolve the nuclear standoff with North Korea.

Pompeo will leave Washington on Thursday for Pyongyang at the start of a round-the-world diplomatic mission that will bring him to Brussels and a key North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit, officials said. "There is no precedent for a country that has openly tested nuclear weapons and developed a nuclear arsenal and infrastructure as substantial as the one in North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons", Daryl Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, wrote in a commentary published Monday.

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