USA urged to create 'right conditions' for talks with North Korea

USA urged to create 'right conditions' for talks with North Korea

The top diplomats of South Korea and Russian Federation have agreed to step up their diplomatic cooperation toward peacefully resolving North Korea's nuclear issue, the foreign ministry here said Wednesday.

Spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the denuclearization of North Korea remained the top US national security priority and Washington's "maximum pressure" campaign to bring that about was succeeding.

Yun told CNN "it was completely my decision to retire at this time", but he declined to comment to Reuters when asked in an email why he was leaving.

A senior State Department official told Reuters late past year that Yun had sought direct diplomacy with North Korean officials at the United Nations in the hope of lowering the temperature in U.S.

His announcement on Monday comes after US President Donald Trump reiterated his administration's firm stance on conditions for talks with Pyongyang. The adversaries from the Korean war do not have formal relations and the so-called "New York channel" is the primary means for conveying messages.

The Trump administration has imposed new unilateral sanctions to pressure North Korea, such as by suspending maritime, trading and other companies engaged in maritime smuggling from conducting dollar-based global trade.

South Korea this week urged Washington and Pyongyang to give ground to allow for talks. Really, there is no problem with communicating. He is believed to have been a key player in securing the release of Otto Warmbier, a 22-year-old college student who spent a year in detention in North Korea.

"We must use the full arsenal of our tools to stop North Korea's nuclear ambitions and missile program in order to protect the national security of the United States".

Ambassador Joe Yun, the top State Department envoy for North Korea, is retiring Friday. "Secretary [of State Rex] Tillerson has told me he appreciates my service and did not want me to go, but he accepts it reluctantly".

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"If the USA ignores our honest efforts for improving inter-Korean relations. but prefers provocation and confrontation, the DPRK will certainly respond", Han said, using an acronym for the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea.

It was not immediately clear who would replace Yun or if the vacancy would be filled with a United States official maintaining closer ties to Trump.

JON WOLFSTHAL: He had a tremendous reserve of energy both in frustrating times during the Obama administration when we couldn't get any traction with North Koreans and, I think, during the Trump administration where it's been frustrating just with the internal dynamics.

A rapprochement between the two Koreas, inspired by South Korea's recent hosting of the Winter Olympics, offers a glimmer of hope for diplomacy.

Trump is determined to stop Kim's government perfecting a nuclear-tipped missile that can strike the USA mainland. Trump left the door open, but indicated he wouldn't back down from the condition that Pyongyang is willing to talk denuclearization.

In the CBS interview, Yun noted North Korea had "stopped nuclear and missile tests".

The US also fears that if North Korea becomes a full nuclear power Japan may follow suit, sparking a destabilizing nuclear arms race in the region.

Beyond the missile threat to the U.S. homeland, the national security officials pushing for military action believe that if North Korea becomes a full nuclear power, it will proliferate, potentially sharing nuclear and missile technology with states such as Iran, Pakistan and Libya, and non-state actors.

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