North Korea threatens to resume nuclear, long-range missile tests

Updated: Oct 11, 2019, 08:09 IST | Agencies |

The warning by Pyongyang's Foreign Ministry followed the weekend breakdown of North Korea-US nuclear negotiations in Sweden, the first such talks between the countries in more than seven months

Seoul: North Korea threatened again on Thursday to resume nuclear and long-range missile tests, accusing the US of having instigated some members of the UN Security Council to condemn its recent weapons tests.

The warning by Pyongyang's Foreign Ministry followed the weekend breakdown of North Korea-US nuclear negotiations in Sweden, the first such talks between the countries in more than seven months.

North Korea said the talks collapsed because the US didn't have any new proposals, and whether it maintains a self-imposed moratorium on major weapons tests was up to Washington.

Some observers say North Korea's threat may be a tactic to pressure the US into making concessions as a restart of nuclear and long-range missile tests would likely derail negotiations, deepen its international isolation and further dim prospects for rebuilding its moribund economy.

North Korea also accused the US of being behind the European condemnation of its weapons tests after having "begged for working-level North Korea-US talks" in Sweden. North Korea last year suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests, partially dismantled its long-range rocket test site and dismantled its only known underground nuclear testing site.

US-led diplomacy aimed at stripping North Korea of its nuclear program had been stalemated since the second summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Vietnam in February ended without any agreement.

... slams Europeans over criticism

North Korea slammed a statement by European UNSC members urging strict enforcement of sanctions against Pyongyang for its latest missile test, calling the move a "serious provocation".

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